Your organisation must have some idea of your current and future activities and needs. Your action plans should take into account what these activities and needs will cost. Based on the funds you have now, you can work out how much money you will need in the future to carry out your aims.

To prepare a proper fundraising plan, you need to answer these questions:

  • What will it cost to run your NPO and its projects for the next 3 years?
  • How much money do you have now?
  • How much do you need to move forward?
  • What else do you need? For example, do you need money or support services? Can you secure these through partnerships or other means so that you will need less money to achieve your objectives?

How do you work out how much money you need?

Once you know what your action plans are, you must cost these. This can take some time, as you need to be sure that all items are included and that the costs are realistic.

Do not forget that this costing must include all the expenses related to your projects, such as rent and electricity.

The organisation’s operational costs are vital – each project’s budget must include a proportion of:

  • Overall staff costs.
  • Running costs such as rent, electricity, security and insurance.
  • Supplies like tea, toilet paper, stationary and cleaning materials.
  • Communications costs – phone, fax, email, courier, post, internet, website, newsletter.
  • Travel costs – cars, flights, accommodation.
  • Governance costs – board meetings, annual report, audit.
  • Professional fees when needed, for example, accountant, lawyer, consultants.

Specific project expenses would be dependent on the nature of the project and could include, as in the case of a training project, items such as venue, refreshments, materials, trainers and travel. Depending on the nature of your work, the specific project expenses could be the cost of materials needed to deliver services such as food, blankets, vaccinations, or educational tools, etc.