The Importance of Data for Funding Applications

The Importance of Data for Funding Applications

Melissa Burton

Data is invaluable to your club or organisation. Data is simply another word for information. It allows you to make informed decisions, set strategic objectives and assess how successful your club or organisation is at achieving its goals. Having data at your fingertips allows you to provide answers to problems and keep up with the latest trends in sport and recreation.

Keeping accurate data allows you to:

  • properly accommodate your members

  • efficiently allocate your budget

  • assess whether participation is increasing or decreasing

  • review progress against your strategic goals and objectives

Data is also incredibly important for funding applications. As the amount of available funding becomes smaller and smaller each year, funding providers are coming up with more stringent ways to assess funding applications to ensure that the money is going to where it is most needed. This is where data can help.

While it is important to search widely for relevant data, it is also important to tailor the data to suit your organisation or project in order to create a crystal-clear picture for the funding body. Funding bodies assess an immense amount of applications, so it’s vital that your application doesn’t get weighed down with unnecessary data that obscure the real issue you are trying to address.

Data can be used to identify and demonstrate an awareness of the specific needs of the target group the funding will support. Ensure that you analyse the data and write a supporting narrative that clearly demonstrates how your proposed project will benefit the target group or solve a current issue.

Here are some helpful tips on searching for and making use of data in your next funding application:

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Here are some tools that may assist you in your search for relevant data: 

Google Dataset Search - Dataset Search enables users to find data sets stored across the web by way of a simple keyword search. The tool surfaces information about data sets hosted in thousands of repositories across the web, making these data sets universally accessible and useful. It has been designed for use by the scientific community, but it can be used by anyone to find the statistics they need.

Census – Australian Bureau of Statistics – Provides data from the 2016 Census of Population and Housing, as well as data from the 2011 Census. The next Census is scheduled for August 2021. - This site provides an easy way to find, access and reuse public datasets from the Australian Government and state and territory governments.

Queensland statistics - This government website contains a wide range of demographic, economic and social data relating specifically to the state of Queensland.

The Clearinghouse for Sport brings together Australia’s leading sport and active recreation agencies—using Sport Australia as the principal information coordination point—to share news, evidence and insights about sport, human performance, and physical activity—all in one place.