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What is a Matching Contribution and from where can my NGO get it?

Often you must have come across in RFPs and other donor proposal guidelines that only 90% of funding will be given for the project. So where will the 10% come from?

This 10% is referred to as the matching contribution towards the project. It does not mean that the donor agency is refusing to take responsibility for this 10% but rather it wants to ensure that there is a certain presence of partnership and a sense of ownership about the project and other stakeholders become part of it.

But for smaller organizations, it is still a challenge to source 10%. Below are some of the options from where they can mobilize this 10%

One important element of matching contribution is that it does not necessarily have to be in monetary form. You can explain to the donor that you or the beneficiary community is willing to provide an in-kind contribution to the project that will be 10% of the total budget.

In-kind contribution can be your organization’s office space, the staff time of some of your existing staff like the director, accountant etc. who may be getting paid from another project or from the organization’s corpus funding.

In-kind contribution from the community can be in the form of land and labour and the costs can be evaluated and presented in the budget.

The contribution from external donors or even the government can also be an excellent choice. Many donors will easily extend 10% of project costs because they are getting a chance to get associated with a bigger project at such a small cost. So when you approach them and say that you have a strong prospect of funding of up to 90% for the project, they will be more than willing to join you with the rest 10%.


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