Nothing can replace seeing something up close and personal before you buy it. There is a maxim in philanthropy that “foundations give money to individuals, not institutions”. A site visit implies meeting key players, seeing the shop where things are done, examining the end product.
To give or get a grant requires trust more than anything else. Making a site visit not only increases the likelihood of a successful grant, but helps lay groundwork for developing a trusting relationship in the future. If you have found the right partner for your social investment, chances are good that you and your grantee will work together again.
Kesselman Consulting has made hundreds of site visits in the United States, Europe, Israel, and Russia. As a philanthropist, there is much to gain from site visits, which add immeasurable value to the dollars given.