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6.4 Identify the Need

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If you have a good idea why you want funding, you will be aware of problems or gaps in your community. Careful research of the need is an important first step when planning your project. This will help you decide how best to tackle the problem. It will also keep everyone involved in the project focused

When identifying need some questions to ask are:

  • What is the problem or issue you want to address with your project?

Why are you doing what you are doing, what needs to change?

  • What evidence is there that this need exists?

This can be from your own research or using information that others can provide, local area statistics, census records etc.

  • What are the reasons for the need?

Why is there a gap? Has a service been removed? Is this an ongoing issue over time?

  • Have you carried out any research?

How do you know there is a need?

  • Why have you prioritised this need?

There may be a number of needs not being addressed in a local area so why is this one important? Is it a service that you can provide, is change achievable?

  • Why is your project an appropriate response to the need?

Why are you the best people to deliver the project?

  • Have you consulted with the people your project will benefit and other relevant stakeholders?

Are you going to be working in partnership with other organizations who have you spoken to about the project and do they think it will benefit them?

  • Do you know about relevant local strategies or initiatives, or other projects working in this field and how your project will fit in?

​There is no point reinventing the wheel if there is similar project to you.   Why are you not working together if there is there a capacity issue? How do you feed in to strategies and the bigger picture locally and nationally?

More information on ways of defining need and how to evidence need can be found on the Big Lottery Scotland website.

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