We already had a general idea of reporting in our previous chapter with the description of the financial report. Also here, the form and the content of reporting is usually explained in the application requirements. The report contains a narrative and a financial section (which we explained earlier), but you can also add some other relevant documentation, such as evaluation results, report by the team of trainers, press clipping. If you kept your administration and finances meticulously, final report preparation will not be complicated.
Be honest when answering the required questions and do not be afraid to have a critical opinion if necessary. Write down why you think that the applied method did not have the expected results and what you have learned from that experience.
The narrative report is usually followed by the application form – all you need to do is compare your initial plan and current realization and explain deviations if any. Here are some questions that can help you develop the narrative of your report:
- Have you realised all planned activities at the planned time? Were there any changes?
- What did you achieve by each activity and does that fit into the frameworks you had initially set?
- If you had previously set the indicators of success – have you metered them and what are their values?
- Were there any unforeseen circumstances (risks) and how did you react? Did that influence the final results and achieving of the goal and to what extent?
- How did you engage participants in activities, which methods did you apply and what were the effects?
- Which steps did you take in order to increase visibility of your project and what were the results?
- Do you have plans for continuation of the project and what do you expect to achieve?
- How did beneficiaries (participants of the youth exchange) reacted and what were their impressions after completed activities?
- What are your impressions about communication and cooperation with partners?
Of course, these are only a few ideas to use as general guidelines at your report writing, but you can add/exclude as many as you prefer and adjust it to your youth exchange’s needs.
You can also prepare a less detailed report for your youth exchange participants. It is not mandatory, but it can be very useful since it provides them valuable information and also enforces the connection between you and them – especially if you wish to continue cooperation with them!