Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Almost-Perfect Case Statement

Is there really such a thing as a perfect case statement? Most likely, what looks perfect to you may seem otherwise to your boss, or even to your own self reading it again after a year. By definition a case statement must bring out the need for your program or project in such a way that the reader is almost compelled to fund the project. For capital campaigns especially, case statements make or brake the decision itself. While perfect may be difficult to achieve, I contend that hard work, practice and good writing can certainly take your case statement out of the "boring" category to the "must read" one... almost perfect!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Outcome Data Can Have Many Uses

Outcome measurement is not just for program staff. Although the most popular and important use of outcome data - the data collected from outcome measurements - is to assess how the programs are doing and whether improvements are needed, there can be many other uses as well. And all of them contribute to a more efficient and effective nonprofit organization.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Showing the Need Creatively

Deep down each one of us is convinced that the program (or service or organization) we are writing grant proposals for is absolutely and imperatively needed in the community. And we also know that the needs statement of a grant proposal is the ideal venue for a detailed explanation of the need that exists in the community. Yet sometimes it becomes difficult to find the relevant information to adequately explain that need in the most fascinating and urgent of tones. Although the descriptive quality of a needs statement should not be downplayed, the fact remains that the star of this show must always be the quantitative data that proves without a shadow of doubt the gap in services that your organization is trying to fill. The dilemma lies in the fact that data is usually BORING!