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Meet the man who will make you money

September 11, 2015

Dewi Smith at Better BidsMeet Dewi Smith, Development Officer at the Better Bids Team. Dewi heads up support to applicants submitting a second stage application to the Big Lottery Funds People and Places programme.

Advice from the Better Bids Team is so useful that those applicants that use the service are 65% likely to get a grant, in comparison to the success rate of 50% for those that don’t use the service. Dewi explains the in’s and the outs of the support on offer.

So what is the Better Bids service?

The Better Bids Team provide free face to face advice, workshops, webinars and a dedicated resource website support to applicants who have been invited to submit a second stage application  under the People and Places Programme.

Sounds too good to be true? What’s the catch?

There’s no catch really, the service is paid for by the Big Lottery Fund and is free to applicants. If your outline proposal form application gets the thumbs up, the Fund will put you in touch with them.

What makes the advice so useful? 

Asked to describe their 45 years collective experience Dewi said, ‘you name it, we’ve done it’. This includes having worked at the Big Lottery Fund and assessed applications- giving the team a fairly good idea of what the Fund is looking for in an application and a well planned project.  Our development officers have significant experience of delivering services at both grass roots and national level and has also sat on the People and Places Committee in the past. The workshops and webinars that are delivered cover topics like evidencing need, writing outcomes and exit strategies.

I have yet to submit an outline proposal- can I access their support?

Yes and no. As the service is mainly targeted for those invited to submit a full application the 1:1 support is reserved for them. Where there are spaces on workshops and webinars these are opened up to the wider community.

However, there is plenty of support still on offer- email the Big Lottery Fund directly for any funding advice or check out the huge range of guidance on the Funds website.

What would be your one tip for applicants to People and Places?

Evidencing need- that’s the crux of most good projects. If you can evidence to the funder that your project is really needed and what the impact would be if it wasn’t funded- you are half way there. Read our top tips on consultation here

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