Focus On: Describing the NEED & the DEMAND for your work

1st December 2017

A strong application will have a great section on the need for the work under consideration and an equally good description of the demand for your intervention.

We’ve noticed that this is something that applicants often struggle with!

Ten top tips for talking about need and demand from our Grants Team:

1. Be clear about the difference between the two!

2. Need = how you know there’s an issue that needs addressing e.g. staff and volunteers from term-time youth club have noticed CYP (including quite young children) on the streets for long periods in school holidays, and the local community warden has mentioned the issue.  

3. Demand = how you know that people will engage with you e.g. a youth club has had double figure enquiries from parents asking if holiday clubs are available, plus the CYP themselves have expressed an interest and staff know that a neighbouring holiday club has waiting list.

4. They have equal weighting – you may know there are no lunch clubs for older people on your estate, but unless you have clear evidence of demand, grant-makers will question whether anybody will actually attend.

5. Back-up with evidence - keeping to the youth club theme, an application to establish a provision for teenagers with a “hidden disability”, in an area well-served by “mainstream” clubs which offer peer mentoring to facilitate the inclusion of all young people, would have to have very good evidence of need to make a strong case e.g. activities offered by established provision would not be suitable, mentoring scheme struggles to recruit volunteers and is only available for six week period etc.

6. Keep it local – your own “micro-data” is much more persuasive than cutting and pasting large chunks of IMD data from a government website (but see below)

7. Be specific – talk about waiting lists, local competition, anecdotal evidence – conversations, observations, parish/district priorities etc

8. Regarding national data – a small amount is useful – perhaps just one or two sentences (in your own words, ideally).  Please don’t copy two or three long paragraphs of data.

9. Most recent national data is from 2015

10. If you know your work, you will have reams of quality relevant need and demand data at your fingertips – it’s just a case of identifying which is which and picking the best.  Used well it can really bring an application alive!

If you need further assistance please speak to our Grants Team via email or phone 01303 814 500