In 2018, we set off on a journey to understand the experience of youth-led organisations (YLOs) in accessing donor funds. Over a period of three months we gathered the experiences of over 130 dedicated YLOs of all shapes and sizes, working around the world to fulfil the human rights of young people, including their Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) and on issues such as sexual and gender diversity, gender-based violence, youth livelihoods and mental health, among other themes.
BASED ON THE RESEARCH FINDINGS, THE TOOLKIT HIGHLIGHTS THE EXPERIENCES OF YLOS WHILE NAVIGATING THE DONOR LANDSCAPE.
Through interviews with our researchers and a global survey, each organisation shared their experience of navigating the donor land- scape in the hope of raising funds to support their work in a variety of challenging contexts. YLOs shared their experience working directly with donors, and described the barriers they face in fundraising and how they are working to overcome them. We also spoke to 15 major donors working globally to support civil society, asking them to share their experiences funding YLOs and to reflect on what they see as the biggest obstacles to youth-friendly funding.
WHO IS THIS TOOLKIT FOR?
First and foremost, this toolkit is for the benefit of YLOs looking to access funds and learn more about how to build a fundraising strategy. Youth-serving non-gov- ernmental organisations (NGOs) working with YLOs will also find the toolkit useful in understanding the issues experienced by their partners or grantees. Finally, this toolkit is also useful for donors to get better insight into the experiences of YLOs, as well as which models and best practices make funding more accessible and youth friendly.
WHAT’S IN THE TOOLKIT?
Based on the research findings, the toolkit highlights the experiences of YLOs while navigating the donor land- scape. It provides an insight into the barriers that YLOs face in fundraising, from the YLOs’ and the donors’ per- spectives and tips on overcoming them. It also provides an insight into what donors are doing well and how they can do even better to support the work of YLOs. Finally, the toolkit provides a checklist on how organisations can create a fundraising strategy; and some resources that can help you on this journey!