The opportunities to work with and assist communities within the scope of Rotary’s seven Areas of Focus are endless. Projects can be big or small, span a few days or several years, involve a handful or a horde of people, be local or international. But for every project’s differences, there are some elements that remain the same – good planning and ensuring the project delivers the outcomes intended.
Global grant projects have a minimum project cost of US$30,000 and require two key Rotary partners from two countries. Typically, a Rotarian or club has an idea or is passionate about a particular Area of Focus and a target community. Maybe that idea came from a conversation with another Rotarian or at a Rotary Convention, from a news item or article, or perhaps from a personal experience.
Progressing an idea into a project plan and then getting approval for funding usually needs input from several people who have different knowledge and skill sets.
You will make better progress towards a successful project if you seek advice and help early in the project planning phase. Within the wider Rotary organisation and districts, there are a number of expert groups willing to give their time and knowledge to help Rotarians with project planning and preparation of applications.
These include Cadres (who have specialised technical expertise), Rotary Action Groups, your District Foundation Chair, and by connecting with your International Service Chair to utilise your District Resource Network. Rotary International also has experts in each Area of Focus who welcome enquiries and can assist.
Not all projects may meet the financial criteria of a global grant project, but the resources available for planning and implementation can also be applied to smaller projects.
Successful projects generate goodwill and enthusiasm, and it is always worthwhile to reflect on what worked well or not. A consistent key message is that we have all, at different times, needed to get help or advice by connecting with others. Don’t be shy to seek help or advice at any stage.
Your project will be all the better for it, and it will enhance your own experience and learning.