For my project for my master thesis I went to Ghana. The goal was to make a disabled tricycle manufacturer in Nkoranza independent from funding, and make its business more sustainable. To make this possible I had to find funding for my project and I managed to arrange this funding while I was in Taiwan. Of course there are ways to raise money such as organising your own events. Only when you are abroad when you set up your project this isn’t the easiest thing to do. So these are the steps that I have taken to get funding for my project.
1. Connect with people
The same tip as I mentioned in my previous article about searching for housing abroad. Always check your own network, and isn’t your network big enough expand your network by finding the right Facebook groups. I discovered a lot of people are very helpful in those groups. Maybe they can’t give you the funding directly but maybe they know the right people or the right places to go to. Personally I had some contacts within my village who are giving funding to NGO related projects every year.
2. Have a clear budget
Make sure before you are even going to ask people or organisations to support your project that you have a clear breakdown structure of all the costs. You need to make people clear where exactly the money is going that you will use, so include every type of cost and tell them who will pay for it. It is good to mention that you personally will pay for some costs as well. Another tip is to make the costs 1/3 larger than they will be in reality. Normally organisations don’t fund your whole project so make your estimations larger than they will be in reality. Besides that, prices can increase rapidly in developing countries.
3. Apply for grants
There are different grants given for NGO projects, this can be on EU level, or maybe in the country that you will do your project. Ghana has several funding places that you can contact for funding. Make sure you have a clear idea what your project is about, where you need your funding for and what you will deliver.
4. Search for a different way
In the beginning I was very unsuccessful to get funding for my project. I applied for several grants in the NGO sector. Then I realized I am doing a research as well with my master thesis. Luckily enough the applications for those grants was way more successful. After my first application I already received funding to realize my whole project. I know I was lucky in this case, but sometimes try to look outside the box and see if there are different ways to ask funding.
Good luck in finding funding for your own project! And let me know what project you will do.