The above example not only points to the underlying problem of high child mortality, but also points to the solution, which is the second part of the project rationale. Once the NGO proves to the donor that the problem is real and important, the NGO also has to prove that the solution is with the NGO.
While most solutions seem like basic common sense, it is still important to explain them and prove they are the most effective means of solving the problem. Additionally, the applicant still has to prove that they are capable of implementing the project. For this, NGOs often use SWOT analysis.
The SWOT (strengths and weaknesses, opportunities and threats) tool below comes in handy for discussing the pros and cons of the organization and environment that could impact the project. Strengths and weaknesses are internal issues occurring within the organization, while opportunities and threats are external issues NGOs have less control over but still need to make contingency plans for, in the case they appear.
Clearly, more experienced NGOs with long histories of success are in a better position to prove themselves capable of implementing projects. However for some projects, small grassroots organizations are ideal implementers because they can respond quickly and have close ties with the project beneficiaries. Larger organizations tend to be more bureaucratic, slow-moving and distanced from the beneficiaries.
In this section, it is important to prove the NGO is best placed to implement the project. However, many NGOs spend too long praising their organization. While it seems unfair to all the NGOs doing great work, most donors care more about the project results and the beneficiaries reached than the implementing organization. This is especially true for first-time donors. It is generally best to keep the organizational description short, with a weblink for more information. Additionally, a longer organizational description can be included at the end of the proposal or in an annex.
It is also important for NGOs to research their own organizations before writing the organizational description. Since staff come and go, it is often the case that fundraisers and even program officers are not aware of important facts about their own organizations. Make sure the information is accurate and up to date.