Sustainability is not just about money. Too often sustainable
funding is seen as simply getting better at fundraising or locating
one ever-lasting source of income. Instead, it should be seen as a
more strategic and rounded approach to ensuring the future
financial sustainability of the organisation.
This strategic approach encompasses effective planning, diversifying an organisation's
income where possible, building organisational skills and
capacity and choosing the right funding mix to drive development at the
- A key element of sustainability is to know what income streams
are available and be open to new approaches.
- Income diversification is concerned with exploring and adopting
a sustainable and diverse mix of income sources, which often means
adopting new income streams.
- There are many opportunities available but these opportunities
need to be better understood and organisations need to explore
- Different income streams are accessed and managed in different
ways and involve different relationships with the individual or
organisation supplying the funds.
- The skills needs to access money from each income source also
varies: for example, the ability to fill in a form maybe useful in
winning grant funding, but understanding how to negotiate, might be
needed to obtain funds through trading or contracting.
- All organisations are different - however the message of
diversification applies to everyone. Over reliance on any single
income source is a risk. It is much better to have a diverse