17 May 2011 zichtbaarzijn

By Ben Haagsma

SharePeople requested Fair & Sustainable Advisory Services to help her improving the quality of her next proposal for the Subsidiefaciliteit Burgerschap en Ontwikkelingssamenwerking (SBOS) subsidy channel; this channel is recently created to stimulate the support of Dutch audience for international collaboration.
SharePeople needed external coaching to walk step by step through her previous proposal, which had been rejected, and to improve its logic. They requested special attention for the reformulation of the concrete results of the attitudinal changes of the target group towards bigger support for international collaboration.

The most interesting result of this coaching input was the usefulness of the Logical Framework Approach (LFA). Normally only applied in southern development projects, and often heavily criticized for being too rigidly applied, LFA was very helpful for this assignment. It assisted them to improve the logic of their proposal. Similarly, the PME facilitation experiences gained in the South were very relevant here. Finally, personal coaching proved to be a very enjoyable way of advising.

Which improvements did we add for the subsidy request?

  • We formulated key examples of changes of attitude based on own experiences of SharePeople. Any organisation can distill from its own history powerful illustrations to do so. With these examples it proved easy to formulate the necessary indicators to measure these changes of attitude
  • We linked such key examples with specific target groups to get a better idea of the scope and intensity of the attitudinal changes: looking at initiatives of persons to organize fund raising with their colleagues, establish working relations with southern entrepreneurs, change the policy of their own company.
  • The biggest challenge is to know whether changes in attitude have a sustained character instead of being short lived successes. We decided therefore to add specific follow-up activities to keep track of these changes and learn from them for the formulation of the next cycle of activities. We agreed that trying to reduce the number of activities may seem attractive as it lowers the costs, but is very risky in terms of underfunding the project and then not achieving the desired results.
  • The result is a better proposal submitted to the SBOS channel. But the real proof of the quality of this proposal will be the positive funding decision soon to come.
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