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Starting Your Nonprofit from Scratch

By: Brittany Engelmann-- 2017-01-25 7:01 am --

There is a lot that goes in to developing and launching a nonprofit organization, and it can be a daunting endeavor initially. However, building a nonprofit organization isn’t that much different than building a for-profit business. The main differentiating factor is where to look for capitol. Here are some of the core things to consider when starting a nonprofit from scratch.

Establish a Market

Just because your new venture isn’t for profit, doesn’t negate the necessity of establishing a market. For your nonprofit to be successful, you need to ensure there is sufficient demand, while also ensuring the market isn’t oversaturated. For instance, if your nonprofit is geared toward serving meals to elderly people, you need to seek out other organizations in the area providing similar services. This will help you to determine the needs of your region, so you can hone in on a location for your nonprofit where your services will be needed the most. 

Find Your Capitol

Whereas for-profit businesses turn to investors for capitol, nonprofits need to seek out donations and grants. For a new nonprofit without a proven track record, acquiring funding can be challenging at first. You need to be sure to have a strong concept of your nonprofit, including a plan that details how you’ll utilize your funding throughout the course of your first fiscal year. Some of the most popular ways to fund a nonprofit include:

  • Government grants: Government grants can provide a stable source of funding to nonprofits. Yet, the government won’t grant funds to just anyone. You need to invest ample time into creating a persuasive application, as the competition for government grants can be fierce.
  • Non-government grants: In addition to government grants, a variety of foundations and businesses also offer grants to nonprofits. Start by conducting grant research to determine which foundations are most relevant to your nonprofit. The Foundation Center is an excellent resource for nonprofits seeking grant funding, and they’ll help connect you with the most relevant and promising grants in your niche.

Crowdfunding: Crowdfunding is another viable outlet for raising money. Crowdfunding allows you to pitch your idea to the public at large, and collect donations from people easily and efficiently.

Plan Your Budget

The budget of nonprofit organizations is a bit trickier to manage, as you aren’t generating profits to help pay off overhead expenses. As such, when planning your budget, you need to be as frugal as possible. Since payroll is often one of the largest expenses, many nonprofits seek to establish a majority of their labor from volunteers. It’s also important to establish relationships with low-cost vendors, so the cost of your monthly supplies will remain predictable and affordable.

At DollarDays, we are dedicated to supporting nonprofit organizations of all sizes. We offer a wide variety of office supplies, store fixtures, and other essentials that can help you launch your nonprofit and access the tools you need to thrive. We offer pricing on bulk goods that’s highly affordable, enabling you to maintain lower overhead costs. Visit our website today to start shopping.