Application Question 5 - What are you Applying for?

When asked what are you applying for it is easy to fall give two types of answers, neither one of which is really "selling" you project to the funder in the best light. You could be tempted in saying that you are applying for "a computer" or "a salary for a staff member" etc. This, however, isn’t normally what the funder wants to hear in response.

Funders want to fund solutions to problems. Saying you are applying for "a computer" or "a salary" focuses only on the cost you need funded. An alternative is to say: "for a project to alleviate the problems experienced by young people in our area" which is closer to a better answer as it responds explaining the needs you are seeking to target. However, answers like this can be difficult to grasp.

We recommend that you give your project a distinctive name. Something like "Stronger Leaders" will quickly and concisely describe the activities of the project. For some funders, a snappy title may be even better.

You should be clear about who your project will benefit and how they will benefit. How are you going to be working with them? Will it be through a counselling service, a family outreach service, education classes or drama workshops?

Normally when the funder asks you what you want the grant for they are expecting a clear description of exactly what that project will be doing. Perhaps in the first two months the worker will be setting up a mother and toddlers' group, in the third month they will organise training courses for young people in the area.

The funder will want to know how often your project happens, where it is based and who it will be open to. They will also want to know how the project will be staffed. Think about how volunteers will be involved, how they will be supported and also how your project will be managed. How long will your project run? Will it be for one, three or five years?

Developing an action plan prior to making an application will make answering these questions much easier.