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Writing a Project Proposal Handout IFMSAorg » About » Intro to (DOC) by chenboying


									Project Proposal Writing
Timothy Rittman What is a Project Proposal? A project proposal is a document which describes a project. It has an ordered outline to be clear in describing the project. It must be a document which can be used practically to in the development of the project. Above these, the project proposal is a tool for fundraising and implementation. The proposal should be able to tell a potential funder everything about the project. In addition, you should be able to use the proposal when carrying out the project. You should be able to refer to it at every stage of the project. Why is a Project Proposal Important? The proposal is important in the context of the whole project. To see this, we can look at the Hetzel wheel:

It can be seen that at each stage of the wheel the proposal can fit in:  parts of the assessment can be used in the proposal (problem statement)  communication results in the writing of the proposal  the political decision is likely to be made on the basis of the proposal  planning, implementation and monitoring and evaluation are all carried out under the direction of the proposal  the proposal can be reviewed in light of the evaluation and modified in assessment for the next cycle The quality of the project proposal is vital to your chances of securing funding. It may be the only contact any funder will have with your project, so it needs to be written with that in mind.

If the project proposal is not referred to during the implementation of a project, it is useless. The usefulness of a proposal depends on its practicality when carrying out the project.

Evaluation is a vital part of any project. The proposal needs to clearly set out what criteria will be evaluated and how this will be carried out. In this way a project’s continuity and sustained improvement can be maintained easily. Example of a Project Proposal Outline Introduction: This needs to be brief and readable, so that anyone who reads it can have a quick idea about the project. This is likely to be one of the few sections that ‘busy’ people, eg funders, will read. Executive Summary: Again, this will be one of the few sections read by ‘busy’ people. It should be able to give an overview of the whole project without reading the rest of the proposal. Problem Statement: Outlines the area of need which your project aims to address. This will be based on data such as reports, surveys and pilot projects. You need to be clear on what your project is really doing. Proposed Strategy: Gives an idea of how you will carry out your project. While you may be incredibly ambitious, you must ensure that people reading the project can see that it is believable and achievable. Aims, Goals and Outcomes: There are a number of different strategies for formulating outcome expectations. This section is concerned with providing measurements of outcome that can be used later on in the evaluation. Evaluation: Outlines how you will carry out your evaluation. This is important that you can refer to this when you come to do your evaluation proper. Financial: The budget. This needs to be comprehensive, clear to funders and transparent, showing the expenditures which you will make and the income you expect. Appendices: There may be documents that are useful to give background to the project that can not be included in the rest of the proposal for reasons of space. They can be put in the appendices. Writing the Proposal: When writing the proposal, there are a few things to keep in mind:  The length of the document needs to be judged well to ensure that it is readable but contains the important points  Drafting is important to ensure the best quality document that you can produce

 However, it is important to keep in mind the proposal writing time in the context of the rest of the project; you do not want to miss funds application deadlines by taking too long on the proposal.  It is important to coordinate the writing of the proposal and to delegate duties of who will write what  Good English (British or American!) is important, especially when applying for funds. This is an outline of a method for writing a proposal which I have found useful, especially when writing the proposal in large or dispersed groups. Write an outline of the proposal, consisting of:  an outline for each section  each section consists of paragraph titles  this provides a skeleton on which the proposal can be written  each paragraph can be delegated on its own to any member of the group For example, here is an outline from a refugee camp project I was involved in writing: Evaluation: One page  How and why will the project be evaluated  Strategy for feedback from students  Strategy for feedback from refugees  Cost effectiveness and efficient use of funds  Long-term evaluation strategy by the refugee community and local organising committee

Each section can then be allocated to a different member of the group to write. If you have any feedback on this resource, please contact me by e-mail:

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