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How will this tool help?

The ‘core’ refers to the set of essential features or ‘ingredients’ that you need to scale in order to meet your intended impact (or the change you want to achieve).

To scale-up through working with others, be that your team, partners or wider stakeholders, you will need to define your core clearly. Think of it as a recipe that others can use to deliver your solution at scale and achieve the same results.

This tool will help you design your core by equipping you with a recipe for impact at scale.

Watch the video case study below to understand how CHDC have applied this tool in practice 


To work on the tool worksheet, follow these steps:
Make a copy to your own Google Drive folder: click file > make a copy > entire presentation > select your personal drive folder, OR
Download a copy to your desktop: click file > download > Microsoft Word (or other file type)


Step 1

Start by bringing in your intended impact to guide your thinking and use this to decide what it is you’re scaling.

Think critically about what you are scaling – is it values and principles, a programme, a campaign? We use the word solution below to indicate the ‘thing’ whose impact is being scaled.

Is it a programme? For example, CHDC scaled a community-based parenting programme to meet their intended impact of supporting individual families and wider communities in the early prevention of violence against children and gender-based violence. Read more about the CHDC case study here.

Is it an approach? Social Bite’s Jobs First programme provides real jobs and extensive wrap around support to people who have experienced homelessness. This enables them to develop their skills, strengths and confidence and to contribute to society. Social Bite identified that their person-centred approach to supporting constituents was the ‘core’ they needed to scale, not the entire programme.

Is it a campaign? Campaign messages such as ‘ending the use of single use plastics to tackle climate change’ have been successful around the world in reducing pollution.


Step 2

Work through this worksheet designed to help you narrow down your essential ingredients.

Design your core recipe by dividing the ingredients of your solution into:

  • Essential ingredients – elements that you absolutely need to have to achieve your intended impact
  • Non-essential ingredients – elements that are nice to have.


Examples of the 'ingredients' you need may include: (1) the values that underpin your solution; (2) processes that support your solution; (3) key messages or tactics (i.e the social action activities used to achieve the a campaign’s goals).

Step 3

Now challenge yourself to consider why different ingredients are essential.


Our tendency is to make our programmes, campaigns or services as good as possible, so we fill them with all of the things we think will make them better. However, the more we put in there, the more complex it becomes. This makes for a more difficult or expensive recipe for others to follow, which makes it less scalable.

Step 4

Dive deeper into the essential ingredients. What must be ‘exact’ or delivered in precisely the same way? What can be flexible to allow for adaptations depending on context?

For example, if you are scaling a campaign, the message of the campaign must be exact to create its intended impact, but how local campaigners choose to deliver the messages can be flexible – be it through a public protest or through handing out pamphlets.


Here is another example of flexible ingredients. Say you are running a training programme for young people - the topics of the training sessions will have to be exact. But how facilitators run the session, for example by including games and icebreakers, can be flexible to allow for local staff to tailor the training programme to their communities.

Step 5

You now have a recipe for your core!


Want to learn more?

CHDC's journey to scale

On a mission to prevent violence against children and gender-based violence against Uganda, CHDC partnered with Spring Impact to take their Parenting for Respectability (PfR) programme to scale.

On pages 4 and 5 of this case study, you can learn more about how CHDC used the ‘Design your Core’ exercise as a critical starting point on the journey to scale.


Want to take the next step on your scaling journey?

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This is our 5-week online course designed to help you build the foundations for scale

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