For businesses that are created with the intent to send large portions of its collected funds out towards causes and needs across the world, a question arises that often leaves individuals scratching their heads and wondering: “Where does all that money come from?” If a company doesn’t have a service or product to offer in direct exchange for cash, how does a Not-For-Profit startup stay afloat and hope to become successful?
The Non-Profit Startup is a very different business design than your regular for-profit venture, but how they accumulate their capital funding is actually strikingly similar. Below is how Non-Profit Startups go about earning their first donations, as well as how they are able to continue gathering donations for the future.
Find and Make Friends
After you decide on what goal you want your not-for-profit organization to work towards, your first stop in your search to find and secure funds would be other already existing not-for-profit organizations that are working towards a goal that is either similar, or even the exact same as yours.
By working in tandem with like-minded and already more successful non-profits similar to yours, you can possibly receive funds from their pool of donations, and even be introduced to their own pool of giving donors and benefactors who may even decide to start donating to your new organization as well.
Before you start depending on the possibility that you might receive free money just for knocking on their front door, do your homework: Find out where they first got their first donation from. By looking at who their guardian angels were, you might also be able to have the same stroke of luck they did. If their benefactors donated to this cause once, they might be willing to do it a second time, but with you.
Where to Find Your Own Donations
In addition to befriending already established non-profits, here are other places that non-profits can find funding:
- Your Own Donations – Your first funds will usually be coming out of your own pockets. If this unsettles you, and you aren’t willing to donate to your own cause, then you should probably rethink your non-profit’s mission. If you don’t feel compelled to give support, why would others?
- Charity Events & Benefits – Having events where you invite donors to come together and donate in person is a great way to network and lead to further donations.
- Government Funding – If your cause is notable enough, you may qualify to earn some Government funds and grants. This is rare, but it does happen.
- From Individual Contributors – Once you have secured bigger donations from organizations, it is now time to look to individuals for smaller donations. Don’t target and ask these people first for donations, ask and approach and reach out to these individuals last.
Learning the ropes and benefiting from their already set up connections and experience is invaluable to your newborn startup. If you truly believe in the cause that your non-profit is fighting for, and so does the more prominent non-profit you are aiming to work with, then it is very likely that they will accept your desire to learn from them with open arms. So make a friend, because more change can be accomplished when working together, than against.