Charity Funders, have a heart…please…


I write this wearing my SHARE Community hat, but I think my experience will resonate with many of you working in the charity world.  We all know that times are tough and that it’s more difficult than ever to get our brilliant projects funded.  I know that funders have to make hard choices, and that they just don’t have enough to fund every great idea.  But the ones that really frustrate and annoy me are those who refuse to give any feedback after they reject your bid.  And I speak as someone who has been applying for funds – more often than not successfully – for over 20 years.  They won’t talk to you on the phone, they won’t give written feedback, so you never know exactly what was missing, what would make your failure of a bid into a winner.  You’ve followed the guidelines, you’ve submitted all the right information, you’ve proposed something that you think will help them to meet their priorities.  But you still get the rejection e-mail.  Surely, at a time when smaller charities are having to cut back on anything and everything non-essential, being helped to avoid making the same mistakes, and being given information that helps us to learn how to make sure our bids are successful, would not cause the larger trusts too much pain?  So this is a request to anyone from a major grant giving trust out there who has a policy of not giving any feedback: please think again, and help those of us trying to work with you to make a difference in the world to make the most of the resources that we have.

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