Many library services have benefitted from access to external funding sources, such as Arts Council’s Grants for the Arts programme and the Libraries: Opportunities for Everyone Innovation Fund. This has, for example, enabled them to run new services and/or extend existing services.
When library services apply for funds like these, they are often competing against organisations from other sectors - many of whom are more experienced at bidding for funds. As a result, the success rate of library services bids are sometimes not as high as for other organisations.
The Arts Council is currently running some workshops for library staff to help them apply for their Grants for the Arts funding. Sessions are still due to run in Exeter Phoenix on 25 January, Nottingham Playhouse on 1 February and Cambridge Junction on 8 February. To compliment this, the Taskforce is now running 4 masterclasses which will particularly focus on supporting services who want to apply for non-Arts Council funding.
What will the masterclasses cover?
Through the masterclasses, we want to encourage and support more library services / libraries to apply for funding - and increase the success rate of bids when library services / libraries do apply. The sessions will, therefore, walk through all the steps of the process, including:
- designing the project
- things to consider when working with partners
- identifying funding and other sources of support
- making the bid
- assuming you’ve been successful, reporting on, and evaluating, the project as it’s delivered
The masterclasses will include a mix of presentations, interactive exercises and plenary discussion groups and feedback sessions. They will also take you through a number of checklist / template documents that you will be able to take away and use following the events.
Learning from experience
We know that it’s invaluable to hear from people who’ve already embarked on this journey, to learn from their real-life experiences. You will be hearing from people who’ve been there before, on:
- what worked well
- what worked less well
- the sort of techniques and approaches they’ve used
- the challenges they’ve faced
- the skills and outlook that’s needed for success
We will have a mixture of presenters, including library service colleagues and representatives from funding bodies who manage funds and the grant application process.
So why not benefit from others’ hard work and come along to one of our free masterclasses on these issues. We’re holding them in:
- Lincoln on 21 February (Midlands)
- Greenwich on 28 February (London)
- Bristol on 5 March (South West)
- Newcastle on 14 March (North)
All events will run from 10:30 to 16:30 (registration will open at 10:00), and lunch and refreshments will be provided. You can find the agenda for the day on the eventbrite links.
Who should attend?
These sessions are primarily aimed at people involved in managing libraries (both council-run, commissioned and community managed) who would be leading in developing external funding proposals.
We know that many library services work with, or are considering working with potential partners in making joint funding proposals. If you have any partners in mind already and would also like them to attend the masterclass with you, then please feel free to extend the invitation to them directly and ask them to register via Eventbrite.
Signing up to attend
If you’re interested in attending the masterclasses, please register via the Eventbrite pages for Lincoln, Greenwich, Bristol and Newcastle. If you have any further queries about the events, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.