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How to write a good project | Print |

Because works on assessment of applications submitted to Lot III – Equal opportunities and social integration are advanced, we would like to share with you notes and comments from the assessors. We hope they will help you to “transfer” good project ideas into our Application form.
Comments are written in connection to specific sub-points of the Application form.

1.1 Project title

Project title is not technically assessed. It should be remembered however to make it short and corresponding to activities planned in the project. It can be helpful in project completion process while the title will be presented on posters, leaflets and other materials connected with project completion.

2.5.3 Currently run projects

This point should include precise information about projects in completion, which were indicated in point 2.5.2 of the table. It will allow easier assessment of the applicant’s experience. It is important to indicate whether the projects in question were completed in a partnership and if the applicant were a partnership’s leader. While indicating the project’s value it is advisable to unify the currency and to present the projects’ value in PLNs.

3.1 Detailed project description

This place in the Application often lacks coherent and organised descriptions of activities.

Things to remember:

1. In case of a social project recruitment is a very important part of activities and should be correctly described, that is: include information on the ways of informing the end-recipients about participation in the projects, a way to apply for the project, basic criteria assessment and criteria of additional recruitment (e.g. an interview, information about the participant’s motivation).

2. It is good to organise the project description chronologically

3. While describing an activity, for example a training, the applicant should present such elements as: the training’s subject, headcount of training groups, training days, used methods, information about the trainer and the training place. If such information is presented in a different place of the Application form (e.g. point 3.4.3), the detailed description in this point can be omitted.

4. Project description can also include information on additional activities – care of dependent people, return of travel costs of the participants etc.

5. One should note the complementary activities. For example if the applicant organises many types of activities, a connection between them should be presented.

6. The description should be coherent with other parts of the Application form, e.g. point 3.4 of the form – Activities, completion schedule, costs;

7. Description should include information about project completion monitoring and its evaluation after the project is completed.

3.2 Project justification

Project justification is an element of the Application form which is presented without necessary attention; therefore we would like to draw your attention for some elements which should be considered while writing the Project justification.

1. Please describe situation in the planned project completion area.

2. Target group description is an important element of the project. Omitting the description indicates a lack of preparations for project’s completion. Target group/groups analysis should include at least such elements as problems analysis, obstacles and needs and requirements of the target group.

3. Target group’s characteristics should include a division considering important group features, such as age or gender and indication of particular needs and requirements in this context.

4. Each target group should be briefly characterised. For example if the project supports voluntary workers and the disabled, both of these groups should be characterised basing on commonly available data (work offices, reports and analyses, MSO data) and own data (elaboration on own questionnaires, experience in project realisation, own reports, research). Presenting such information in the Application form shows the knowledge of the target group and possibility for support of the group by planned activities.

5. In this part, please conceder the calculation and justify the project’s expenses!

3.3.2 Description and justification for completion of investment activities

This part of the Application form should include a justification of expenses for investment activities. It is an often mistake to justify the need to take investment expenses as they are important for reinforcement of the Applicant’s infrastructure. It should however be shown as important to efficient completion of the project. The justification should be very precise.

In this place it should be underlined that the NGO Fund is mainly focused on supporting the social activities. If the planned activities are infrastructural, they have to be necessary for efficient project completion. A different approach, where infrastructural activities have to be completed with an addition of „soft” activities will cause a decrease of points in technical assessment or complete project rejection. For example a project based on building modernisation and running a training for the Applicant’s employees, can be considered by the assessors as not reaching 50% of the possible points and therefore making it as ineligible for granting.

3.4.2 Activities cost and balance

The Applicants often make a mistake of presenting imprecise description of planned activities in the table of Activities cost and balance. The table should not name activities with costs categories. For example, instead of “Costs of leaflets and posters printing” one should write „Participants recruitment” along with a description of sub-activities which make the activity, that is “printing of leaflets and posters, telephone calls costs, advertisement materials distribution”. It is worth to include planned total of costs of presented activities in the table Name and scope of the activity. For example “Conducting trainings: organization of the training for the unemployed (costs of lodging, food, training rooms): 3 levels of training x 3 days x 16 persons x 250.00 PLN per person.” and insert correct data in corresponding columns (categories).

3.5.1 Compliance of project aims with Financial Mechanisms' and NGO Fund's aims

In this point of the Application form the Applicant can directly indicate that the aims which the project will complete are compliant with the aims of Financial Mechanisms and the aims of the NGO Fund. Information about the Financial Mechanisms’ and NGO Fund’s aims is presented in the NGO Fund Procedures Handbook Lot II Environmental Protection and sustainable development and Lot III Equal opportunities and social integration.

It is an often mistake made by the beneficiaries while filling in point 3.5.1 is to indicate proposals for activities in reference to subject areas instead of referencing of project aims to Lot aims and next NGO Fund’s aims with indication to Financial Mechanisms’ aims which the project will complete.

3.5.2 Indicators of project completion

This part of the Application form gives some problems to the Applicants. At this point it is important for the Applicant to be able and indicate measurable and immeasurable effects of these activities.

Quantitive measurable effects is for example the number of recruited participants, number of trained participants, number of publications printed and distributed and other connected with completed project peculiarity.

Quality measurable results of the project is for example buying or increasing knowledge – measured by tests conducted after the planned activity, motivation increase – is defined basing on psychologist’s, therapist’s reports.

The applicants often omit an indicator which is for example finding employment by a given ratio of the project’s participants.

3.6 Project management

This is a place in the Application form where a structure of management planned for the project should be presented. If the salary costs are a significant part of the project it is good to justify them in this part of the form.

Description of the management structure should take into consideration the partner’s role in the project. In this place posts and duties connected with them should be presented. Lack of information about subcontractors management in the project is an often mistake made by the Applicants.

3.7.2 Partner’s role in the project

The NGO Fund promotes activities undertaken in cooperation with the partners; therefore it is good for the project planned for a wide range of end-recipients e.g. whole society of a given gmina was completed in a local partnership. The applicants do not fully use the possibilities given by the partnership and it happens that the partner is a cooperating institution – supports promotion, exchange of good practice instead of for example completing the project together. It is good to make a partnership with diverse institutions which are able to significantly contribute to increase the project’s influence and to support the Applicant in project completion.

3.8 Project’s durability

Project’s durability is one of the main elements of Applications assessment; therefore it is worth to indicate following elements which show the possibility to continue activities started by the project:

1. Information on sources of further activities co-financing – what funds or institutions the Applicant plans to use in order to continue the project.

2. Information on the influence on the target group – measurable change of their situation as a result of project completion.

3.9 Horizontal policies completion

the NGO Fund requires from the applicants to contribute to completion of horizontal policies of the Financial Mechanisms by completing their projects.

For example, horizontal policy Equal opportunities for men and women can by completed by activities which include:

support for women and/or

in the analysis of the target group a consideration has been taken for an analysis of the gender or/and

project has supporting activities of representatives of a given gender or/and

a selection of activities has been made with consideration to the gender criterion (and it is not a stereotypical selection).

Other policy, good management, can be expressed in the project by including the target group into identification process, formulating and implementing the project, creating structures in partnership project (partnership council) or by providing transparency of activities.

We hope that the above comments and indications for the Application form will help you to prepare projects for the NGO Fund.

With regards,

NGO Fund’s team


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