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How to collect evidence throughout your project

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In your End of year and End of grant forms we’ll ask you to tell us the percentage of people who have benefited from your project under our equality categories and back this up with evidence. So you’ll need to put in place ways to collect this.

What to consider

  • We encourage you to collect information about all our equality categories but we realise this might not always be possible or appropriate, for example, if finding out this information might stop people getting involved in your project or affect how they will benefit from it. If you think this may be the case, please contact your Grants Officer to talk it through.
  • When you’re collecting equality information it’s important to tell people that all the questions are voluntary. Some equality categories are particularly sensitive (typically about a person’s sexual orientation, religion or belief, disability, ethnic background or community background) so you could include an option of ‘prefer not to say’ (although this may reduce your response rate).
  • In general, sexual orientation information shouldn’t be collected from people aged under 16, although there may occasionally be projects working with young people aged 12 and over where it is appropriate.
  • Many projects have both direct beneficiaries (the people who use the project) and indirect beneficiaries (for example, their family). You only need to collect data on your direct beneficiaries, unless indirect beneficiaries are important to achieving your project’s outcomes.
  • How you collect your evidence will depend on the type and scale of the project, how much you know about the people who will benefit and the time your staff or volunteers have available. You need to be able to show that you’ve taken a balanced approach bearing all this in mind.
  • We don’t expect you to collect information from everyone but you’ll need to have enough evidence to provide reliable figures about the spread of people benefiting from your project.
  • Your evidence collection methods should minimise the risk of collecting information about the same person more than once in any year.

Remember that effective equality data collection can help you identify who is and isn’t benefiting from your project’s activities and services. You can then use this learning to make changes, to ensure that your project is reaching everyone that could benefit.

See examples of how to collect evidence throughout your project

Learn more about tools you can use

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