Learning and reporting

We want to know about difference our funding is helping to make. We also want to support our grant holders to understand how and why change happens – and help them adapt.

To achieve this we place a strong emphasis on monitoring, evaluation and learning (MEL) and will work you to ensure you capture and adapt to learning during your grant. We will also work with other funders and stakeholders to understand how learning can help use our resources to the best possible effect. Download our MEL strategy to find out more.

Reports are an important way for us to understand how projects are going and capture learning. When reviewing reports we want to be able to understand if your project is on track, and if not, whether there is a good plan in place to address any issues. We also want to see the project team are learning and adapting from its experience. You report back to us is based on what was agreed in your start up form. Read more about start up forms here.

Reporting levels

We’ve given all new grants made since the start of 2017 a reporting level - Levels 1, 2 or 3. This level determines how much information we need you to share with us. We do this to ensure that the information we request is proportional to the work and organisations we are funding and to make sure that we only ask for information that we will use. We usually set reporting levels on an initiative-wide basis having considered the:

  • Size and scale of grants
  • Capacity of the organisations we are funding
  • Learning ambitions for the initiative
  • Levels of risk
  • The requirements of any other co-funder of an initiative

We will tell you what your grant’s reporting level is in the offer letter.

There are 3 different report that we’ll require from you.

Six month update

This short report is submitted at the six month point of each year of the grant and helps us to understand more about: 

  • What has happened
  • What have been the successes
  • What have been the challenges (and how they are being managed)
  • Any significant issues that the project or the organisations we are funding are facing

In some cases we will want to discuss this update with you further, either in person or over the phone.

Annual reports

At the end of each year we will ask you to submit a more detailed narrative report, financial report and your latest annual accounts. It helps us to understand more about:

  • Project progress and the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (Level 2 and 3 only)
  • The change that the project is creating and who is benefitting
  • What learning is coming out of your project and how you are using this to inform your project plans
  • Expenditure against budgets and any adjustments that need to be made for future years
  • How we might feature your work in our communications
  • Any significant issues that the project or the organisations we are funding are facing

The report also gives you chance to tell us how are we are doing as funder. We will provide feedback on your report and may ask you for further information.

Final reports

The end of grant report is your opportunity to give us a more complete picture of what the grant has achieved, what you learnt, the change our funding helped to create and the sustainability of that change. We will require a narrative report, a financial report and your latest financial report.

In some cases we will agree you that should arrange for a final evaluation of the work to be carried out by someone external to your organisation and with the right knowledge and skills. In these cases we will also expect a copy of the final report.

Download your reporting pack here.