Part 4: Lessons Learned
FEDECOVERA’s experience in applying for and managing funds has been a continuous learning opportunity that has bolstered organizational capacity and positively impacted their services and community. Noteworthy lessons that could benefit other cooperatives and organizations embarking on a similar path include:
Detailed planning is critical to ensure that the funding will directly align with community needs.
Accuracy and completeness of documentation are crucial. It’s imperative to understand all requirements and submit a carefully substantiated, well-documented proposal.
Organizations must understand the evaluation criteria and tailor their proposals to emphasize the alignment of their projects.
Member participation not only strengthens the proposal, but also cultivates higher levels of commitment and transparency within the cooperative.
Maintaining clear and realistic communication with members and funders on the limitations and possibilities of funding is essential to manage expectations and ensure ongoing support.
Establish strong tracking and reporting systems for using funds promotes transparency and facilitates accountability for funders and cooperative members.
Evaluate and adapt to new challenges at every stage of the project. This is fundamental for growth!
Cooperative Principle 6: Cooperation Among Cooperatives: Collaborate, network, establish and maintain strong relationships with other cooperatives and organizations in the sector. This can provide additional support and the sharing of knowledge and best practices.