Finding funders online

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Finding funders online

  1. 1. Finding Funders Online Now it’s time to do the hard work of sourcing out grants for your NGO. Thankfully, the Internet has made this task easier—and cheaper for NGOs who also wish to maximize their resources. You only need to use your computer with an Internet connection to search and even apply for funding. There are two types of international funders: 1) Corporate and 2) Independent. Corporate foundations are formed using funds from a company while independent foundations are those that are formed by individuals, a group, or family. If The Foundation Center (http://www.foundationcenter.org/) is the main resource in the United States, similar organizations also exist in other regions in the world. The main ones are The European Foundation Centre, Imagine Canada, United States International Grantmaking, and Grantmakers without Borders. The European Foundation Centre (http://www.efc.be) The European Foundation Centre (EFC), based in Brussels, Belgium, is composed of international foundations and corporate funders. In its database, you can search more than a thousand of these potential funders that work in or have an interest in Europe. However, you have to pay an annual membership fee of 5,000 € to access the profiles of the funders there. You need to become a member because the EFC only supports the work of its members and does not give grants or any kind of financial support nor does it provide services directly to grantseekers. When you already have subscribed to EFC, you will have access to the membersonly area of the website where you can update your organization’s profile, view the full profiles of all EFC members, submit a request for information, and find contacts in the funder database. One of the best ways to make full use of the EFC’s vast plethora of resources for potential international funders is to study the funder’s profile carefully. The reason why reading their profiles is important is because you can find if your organization treads on common ground with a corporate funder who might be willing to give you the monies you need.
  2. 2. A funder’s profile gives such a fertile ground of information that will help you decide if they are worth making initial contact. A funder’s name (both in English and another language), location, its primary address and contact person, mission, background, geographic focus, related organizations, program areas, types of support given, application procedures, restrictions, accepted languages, type of funder, legal status, and other important information about its staff and budget can be found in the funder’s profile. Take a very careful look at the program areas that it focuses in as this gives you the funder’s area of focus. Usually, the EFC has members that provide funding for those organizations that do work in Central and Eastern Europe, culture, disabilities, education, environment, AIDS/HIV, minorities, and the youth. If the membership fee is too stiff for your organization as of the moment, the EFC does give you a stepping stone in its Resource centre, specifically the tab that points to “Advice for grantseekers.” You can find links to Websites on Fundraising; European Resources; Foundations and Corporate Funders; Guidance for Nonprofits; and Resources for Students. Imagine Canada (http://www.imaginecanada.ca/) Another international subscription-based funding database website, Imagine Canada aims to support and strengthen nonprofits and charities so that these organizations can also give support to the communities they serve. Its members are Canadian charities and nonprofits that work for the good not only of Canadian communities but also of communities worldwide. By becoming a member, you get to engage and network with other members; have access to education and resources; get discounts; and get recognized. A one-year membership costs $550 while a two-year membership fee is $1000. Perhaps the most valuable resource for organizations looking for potential funders is Imagine Canada’ GrantConnect (http://grantconnect.ca/). This was formerly known as the Canadian Directory to Foundations & Corporations. They call this updated feature an “innovative and comprehensive tool that connects charities with funders who share their cause.” GrantConnect boasts of four dynamic searches—Funder Search; Quick Look-up; Gift Explorer; and People Seeker. It also has what it calls Imagine Canada Prospect Index which is an algorithmic ranking that gives the best funder matches for each charity. Its Detailed Funder Dossiers allow you to get the most
  3. 3. comprehensive information for each listed funder, using multiple data sources to ensure that the information is fresh and accurate. Subscribers also access a funder’s gift-giving history displayed in interactive tables and Google map. Another equally valuable feature is LinkedIn Connections which enables you to discover key influencers in your network by looking at the LinkedIn connections of the hundreds of funders. Management tools, customizable labels, monthly newsletter, and allowing multiple users from an organization are the other innovations that you can take advantage of if you subscribe to GrantConnect. United States International Grantmaking (http://www.usig.org/ ) The USIG, a project of the Council on Foundations together with the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law, aims to “facilitate effective and responsible international grantmaking by U.S. foundations. Thus, it basically caters to grantmakers who want to fund organizations based outside the U.S. Still, you can find such helpful resources as country information; legal issues; global disasters and response; and links which, although targeted for grantmakers, are helpful for grantseekers as well. Grantmakers without Borders (http://www.internationaldonors.org) Global social change philanthropy is practiced by the public and private foundations and individual donors that are members of Grantmakers without Borders. It has around 160 members to date that gives grants globally. Although this is not a funding organization and therefore does not review proposals from grantseekers, it does give a lot of helpful information for organizations looking for prospective funders. Click on the “advice for grantseekers” tab under the site map and you will find links to international foundations and organizations that give grants as well as other helpful tips for organizations and individual grantseekers. From the links in these international funders and funding databases, you have access to hundreds of other sources of funds for your NGO. Don’t neglect to search for local grantmakers in the country where your operations are centered in so that you have a whole spectrum of potential funders to apply for monies for your advocacies.
  4. 4. Check out www.adamscapgroup.com for more Information on Guide to Investments. Other related info you might be interested in: How to Write the Problem Statement (Part 1) How to Write the Problem Statement (Part 2) How to Choose the Right Investments

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