Being a Fundraiser (again)
MRG’s Fundraising Coordinator, Cecile Clerc, gets to meet the donors supporting MRG’s work in Latin America
Although I have very much enjoyed being part of the design of a project and meeting with partners, I have not forgotten that in essence I’m a Fundraiser. Since the details of the work to be undertaken in Latin America have been finalized I‘d been thinking which donors I could submit this proposal to and I actually had the chance to meet a couple of them, here in Lima. The donors I met were all institutional donors as most of the US foundations interested in this work are not based in Peru.
My first meeting was with the Spanish Cooperation Agency. Our contact expressed a strong interest in the project and I’ve already put the date of their next call for proposals in my diary! The Spanish have a strong presence in the region and they already support a number of NGOs working here on human rights and good governance – exactly what our project is about. We then met with the British Ambassador in Peru. Once again, the meeting was productive: Although funding from the FCO is limited, the Ambassador showed a real commitment to help MRG and our partners raise the profile of the work we are planning here.
The meeting in itself was also a truly unique experience, especially as the Embassy is located in the highest building in Lima, occupying its 22nd floor. From there, we had an incredible view of the coast and the sea. Yet, however nice and well located the offices of the FCO (and other donors) in Lima, I was expecting them to be in old colonial houses. I don’t really know why. Maybe this comes from my experience of the Embassies in Buenos Aires? On the contrary, all the donors we met have offices in modern buildings and it seems that it’s the representatives of other Latin American countries who have the pleasure (and good taste?) of working in historical and picturesque offices.
Thinking about donors, I can’t help mentioning the Big Lottery Fund, which has supported our meetings here. Indeed, too few donors are willing to support the design stage of a project, when it’s clear from what I have seen and experienced here that this is key if we want to develop projects that really meet the need of our beneficiaries.
And so back soon in London and start writing and submitting more proposals…
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