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It must be made clear that most donors have adopted common standards of procedures and developed tools to assess organizations’ capabilities before signing any agreement, partnership, or funding with it. Every person who works in the organization needs to know the donors’ requirements and capabilities of the related organization before contacting them or submitting any plans and proposals for funding. These capacities are as follows:
1- Financial capabilities: the existence of the annual financial audit report by a legal accountant or a financial audit company for the last financial year. Some donors ask for the financial audit reports of the last three years. These reports contain the total budget the organization spends per year, which helps the donor to know the organization’s capacity level and the amount of funding that the organization can absorb and spend in accordance with the standard financial procedures.
2- Technical capabilities: the existence of what proves that the organization has previous experience in implementing the same kind of projects which will be funded. For example, previous agreements with the same partners, annual achievement reports or previous project reports in the same sectors. Donors want to make sure the organization they intend to fund is capable to manage this kind of projects and will follow implementation, monitoring and evaluation procedures and can provide well-written reports for all activities.
Risk assessment and its relationship with the amount of funding
3- Policies and internal regulations of the organization: donors request a copy of the organization’s policies and manuals to make a decision, as these policies are valid and must be followed during project implementation that they will fund or send their policies, manuals, queries, and instruction.
4- Reliability: donors have to make sure of the organization’s reliability before funding it and accept its proposals. The organization’s reliability will not only be known through annual financial audit but also through making sure of the existence of the organization on the ground. Therefore, they look for its website and news of its activities online. Others contract a local party to go to the organization’s headquarters and make sure of the building, staff’s working hours, and the extent of the organization’s application of standard procedures according to its financial policies. Moreover, donors might ask for a list of persons who are working in a known organizations and contact them and ask for their opinion about whether this organization can implement the project. They will then make the decision of funding based on these opinions and recommendations.
5- Main staff: donors request a list of the staff’s names, positions, qualifications, and experience, as well as the organization leadership’s experience. These donors also focus on the presence of both men and women in the leadership of the organization. So the organization must work on employing a sufficiently qualified staff of both sexes to be in a level of competence, which gives the donor the confidence to go on with the partnership and transfer money to the organization’s account. Moreover, these aspects and steps assure the donor that the organization has leadership and staff that have enough knowledge of regulatory requirements, as well as technical and financial procedures in place and are capable of implementing the project, writing reports, and providing financial and technical documents.. The organization should continuously train its main staff on proposal writing and fundraising and familiarize them with the donor’s requirements.
Therefore, right from the first day of establishment, the organization should prepare the following to be ready to receive funding:
⦁ The annual financial audit report for the last financial year of a newly established organization or several financial years’ report for organizations established several years back.
⦁ Good reports of implemented projects.
⦁ The organization statute and a copy of the license that was renewed at the beginning of the year.
⦁ The organization’s internal policies, especially financial, procurements, human resources policies and project management, monitoring, and evaluation tools.
⦁ Models of action taken by the organization during project and activities’ implementation. For example, project plans, monitoring, evaluation plans receiving complaints and feedback forms, a set of financial reports, procurements procedures, and some activities’ reports.
⦁ Curriculum vitae of the organization’s leadership (board of trustees and administrative body) and its executive staff.
⦁ The English-language website containing new photos and news of activities and projects implemented by the organization.
⦁ The organization’s profile and strategic plan.
These documents should be continuously updated and translated into English so that the donor will be able to view them at any time.
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