A concept paper is a brief summary which informs your audience about your project, why it is significant, and how it will be conducted. Normally, it is a requirement from funders that you submit a one or a two-page document before embarking on writing the actual grant proposal. Why the concept paper? It is important because it actually helps your potential funders to review your project and determine whether it meets the criteria for funding. During the review, unnecessary ideas are isolated and areas for improvement are highlighted.
Features of a Concept Paper
• Title: This is important because it gives your readers a clue about what your project is about.
• Introduction: Ensure that you give facts which attract the attention of the audience. For instance, give statistics to justify the problem which your project is intending to solve. When writing it, you need to show how the missions of the applicant and the funder match or relate. At this stage, you need to give justification why your project is needs funding.
• Rationale/Purpose: You need to define the purpose of your research and then review the previous writers to determine gaps you need to fill in. Show why your project is the best in solving the current problem. Give reasons why the problem needs the immediate intervention and the repercussions of not solving it. It highlights your intended approach and indicates why your strategies should be considered as the best.
• Project Description: This section justifies why your project is the best in order to convince funders. The description is subdivided into the following parts.
-Goals/Objectives: A goal indicates what is intended to be achieved within a particular time frame.
-Methods: These are activities or approaches to be done within a particular period of time. For example, one of the methods of enhancing food production is by providing training to farmers. You need to clearly state the gaps your method will address.
-Anticipated Outcome: Inform your audience of the expected outcome which will arise after project implementation.
• Budget: This gives an account of the cost of your strategies. You need to give a brief breakdown of the cost you will incur to accomplish your project.
• Project Summary: You should conclude by describing the project goal and why it is essential.
• Contact Information: This is very vital because the funders will use it to communicate with you about your intended project.
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