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Practice tip: Helping funders to understand the value (and cost) of partnership. 

When you’re telling funders about why you want to start a health justice partnership, it’s natural to focus on your patients/clients and the outcomes that you’re hoping to achieve for them. These outcomes might be short-term (for example access to legal assistance) or the longer term (for example improved financial wellbeing, safety or wellbeing). While these are key drivers for practitioners – and often for funders – they don’t often tell the whole story about what partnership can achieve, or what it takes to establish a partnership. 

In addition to outcomes for patients/clients, HJPs can have positive outcomes for services (for example, improved connections across the service system) and for practitioners themselves (for example, improved capability to recognise unmet legal need). In fact, these kinds of outcomes often need to happen before a partnership can effectively serve its patients/clients.

Here’s how your funding application can highlight systemic outcomes

To help you illustrate to funders the case for the resources needed to achieve such outcomes, you can refer to Advocacy tools for health justice partnership. For example, if you’re a new HJP, you could articulate how funding will enable you to identify and understand local need or work with your partner to explore your drivers, expectations and interests in achieving positive shifts for the people you exist to help. Established HJPs might include the value of deepening engagement across your partnership or maintaining relationships of trust between partnering services and practitioners – both of which are foundational to sustained and positive outcomes for your community. This tool outlines helpful outcome measures and provides prompts to help you build your funding application. 

Describing these kinds of activities can help make it clear to the funder what it takes to partner and provides a clearer picture of the value and true cost of partnership. It’s also important to have conversations with your partnering organisation about your shared expectations of what you will be able to achieve together, and how you will demonstrate and measure those outcomes. These prompts are a great starting point for those vital conversations.

Check out the prompts now

Are you working on funding applications for a health justice partnership? Take a look at the prompts in our Advocacy tools for health justice partnerships resource.  

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