Last week we went to a workshop looking at ‘Bid writing for charities and community groups’ which had been organised by the Worcester City Council Historic Environment Record Officer as part of the Worcester Life Stories project that we’ve been evaluating. We went there with two hats on really, firstly to see what advice and tips we could pick up for ourselves as it’s always good to keep learning about how to improve our bid writing, and secondly to see how the information could be useful to other groups that we work with – Meeting Centres, we’re looking at you here!
The workshop was run by Get Grants, an organisation that provides practical support and advice to groups looking to write and submit bids and funding applications. As well as training sessions, they share funding updates via social media (@Get_Grants on Twitter), run online ‘meet the funder’ events and taster training sessions, and have a newsletter which gives ideas about potential funders.
It was a great interactive workshop combining whole group discussions and practical small group exercises, getting us thinking about some of the do’s and don’ts of bid writing, common mistakes to avoid, and ways to strengthen our bid writing skills to (hopefully!) increase the chance of bids being successful. We looked at how to find potential funders and the importance of doing your own research into the funders to make sure your application doesn’t fall at the first hurdle.
There was also the opportunity to review and assess some example funding applications, allowing us to put our new knowledge into practice by seeing it from a funder’s perspective. The exercise really helped to see how just a few small changes can make a big difference to how an application could be assessed.
It was also nice to meet up with people with a range of experiences from different disciplines beyond dementia, as it gave a fresh view and triggered new ideas for us to think about. We came away enthused with lots of new knowledge to feed into what we’re currently doing. We’ve got plenty of ideas to share with groups such as Meeting Centres, although we’d also suggest exploring the Get Grants website to have a look at what they offer, especially the free resources such as their funding finder, virtual events and ability to watch recordings from previous events.
Definitely a day well spent, so thanks to everyone involved.
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