Non-Profit Grant Writing: Designing Strong Evaluation Plans

Close-up of businessperson give agreement document for Evaluation Plans

When it comes to grant writing, many nonprofits feel confident describing their program plans, but the evaluation section can wind up looking like an afterthought. In reality, it’s an important part of the process that can affect your success.

Grantmakers want to see what kind of impact their funding creates, and nonprofits need this data to inform their own decision making. Working with professional grant writers can increase your funding and strengthen your operations. These are a few points you’ll need to address.

Internal or External Evaluations Plans

Your own staff may be able to conduct the evaluation themselves, especially for smaller grants. However, funders may require an independent evaluation for larger projects. In any case, be sure to include evaluation expenses in your budget.

Clarifying Your Objectives for Evaluation Plans

The purpose of an evaluation is to know what changed as a result of your grant activities. Write a clear statement of what you’re measuring and why it’s important.

Choosing an Evaluation Method

Your evaluation method depends on your objectives and your resources. General information may be adequate or you may need to go more in-depth. Typical strategies include pre- and post-tests, focus groups, interviews, surveys, evaluation forms, testimonials, and observations.

Using Your Findings

Funders will also want to know how your evaluation will contribute to the success of your activities. Use your proposal to discuss what you will do with the data internally, and how you will share it with other groups that work on related issues. That may include making adjustments to your own programs and disseminating your findings through meetings and conferences, publications, social media, and the press.

Learn More About Designing Strong Evaluation Plans

If you’re looking for experienced and cost-effective help with your grant writing needs, contact us at Mainstream Nonprofit Solutions. Our professional grant writers will help you to identify funding opportunities and tailor your proposals so you can optimize your success rate.