Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Grant Research is a Steep Climb

Looking for foundation grant funding is laborious even if you know what you’re doing. There’s a lot of ground to cover if you’re going to find a match for your program or organization. It’s tough work and it takes a lot of time.

Did you know that there were 1,617,301 tax-exempt organizations registered in the United States in 2011, including:
    • 1,046,719 public charities;
    • 115,915 private foundations;
    • and, 454,667 other types of nonprofit organizations, including chambers of commerce, fraternal organizations and civic leagues?
(Source: http://nccs.urban.org/)

That means you’re going to sift through a lot of foundation records to find a few that are a good match for your purpose. Even when you find one that funds your field of interest, there’s no assurance that the foundation will review your application.

You need to find those foundations that: A) accept unsolicited applications (or you need to attend the right cocktail parties/golf tournaments where you might gain an invitation to apply); B) have money to give this year; C) offers a funding cycle that gives you an opportunity to apply.

Did you know that Foundations gave $42.9 billion in 2009? According to The Foundation Center, this represents a decrease of 8.4% from 2008.

You need to know who’s giving the money so you can budget your research time wisely.  The Foundation Center goes on to report that the total foundation giving in 2008 was distributed as follows:
    • 72% came from independent foundations;
    • 10% came from community foundations;
    • 10% came from corporate foundations;
    • and, 8% came from operating foundations.
According to the National Center for Charitable Statistics, the number of 501(c)(3) organizations in the United States grew from 631,902 in 1999, to 1,006,670 in 2009.  That’s more than a 59% increase in the number of non-profit organizations. Those organizations gave 42.9 billion dollars in 2009 alone.  This figure should encourage you to keep researching to find the right match for your organization.

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About Creative Resources & Research

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Woodland, CA, United States
Creative Resources and Research is a consulting firm specializing in grant writing, grant seeking, program evaluation and professional development training. We have worked with hundreds of clients including public and private schools, school districts, universities, non-profit organizations, and social service agencies throughout California, securing over $155 million from federal, state and private foundation funding sources over the past decade. Our primary grant writers and program evaluators have over 50 years of combined experience in the education and social services fields. At CRR we prefer a personal approach to the clients we work with; by developing long term relationships, we are better suited to match client’s needs with available funding sources. We provide a variety of services to help assist you, including grant writing, evaluation consulting, professional development opportunities, and workshops.