Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The Best Web Sites To Find Grants

There are hundreds of data banks listing grant opportunities. Many of them require a membership fee or they are dated. The list of funders and links here are valid when published. 

Some of the data banks I have included require a user name, a password and an e-mail address. In some instances your account will require activation through a return e-mail to you to be returned to them or clicking on a link. Please read the privacy notice at the web site, if there is one, and decide whether you want to give the information required.

The list includes links to U.S. foundations and corporations and for the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia. There are data banks aimed at international NGOs. There are specialized banks for animals, women, human rights, health, the environment and international development. I have included what I consider to be the best data banks for U.S. government funds including funds for international purposes...

This is the second new article about finding grant opportunities available at this blog. The earlier one is How to Find Grant Opportunities . You may be aware that I send out 6-8 grant opportunities announcement almost every evening through my Twitter account, http://twitter.com/#!/dgriesmann

There are over 1.3M nonprofit tax exempt organizations in the United States. Most of them are looking for grants to fund their missions. The funds available from nongovernmental sources, foundations, corporations and trust funds are miniscule compared to government sources.

The parameters for inclusion here are –

  • no fees
  • open to all
  • meaningful list
  • broadly based
  • user friendly
  • timely   
I hope that readers will add their favorite links to data banks of grant opportunities to this list, meeting the same parameters.

My overriding principle for this and other articles about grants is - what is on the internet that NPO/NGOs can secure with no cost or gimmicks?  We have many dedicated people in our sector who deserve our thanks who put almost everything we need to know out there for no cost. The hard part of course is mining it for value. That is what I try to do about grants - mining them for value. I have mined here the best data banks that can serve you well. The goal here is to make your search as little frustrating as possible.

The following is not an all inclusive list. I have tried to find as many data banks as possible. They can help you decide which grant opportunities to review and which may not be worth your time. I have added my own comments about the web sites as needed.

The Foundation Center has an excellent Guide to Funding Research for grantseekers that should be read by everyone, staff, consultant, volunteer or board member, starting out for the first or 30th time searching for grants, - http://foundationcenter.org/getstarted/tutorials/gfr/

I have included information and links for international grant opportunities. According to the Foundation Center there were over $7.6 billion in grants given to 15,675 international recipients in 42,169 foundation grants. http://fconline.foundationcenter.org/maps/ 

  1. Grants.gov is an excellent source for timely notice of federal grants, sorted by opening or closing date over the past 7 days. It includes domestic and international grants. I suggest this should be a “favorite” if you are interested in federal grants because it changes regularly  http://www.grants.gov/search/search.do?mode=Search&dates=7&docs1=doc_open_checked  
  2. Federal Grants Wire, a useful search tool for finding federal grants, government grants and loans. They currently index 2,481 federal grants and loans organized by sponsoring agency, applicant type, subject area http://www.federalgrantswire.com/   
  3. Federal Business Opportunities (Fed Biz Ops) with 25,000 - 32,000 contract opportunities, some for nonprofits. This is not an easy site to navigate but if you are looking for business contracts rather than grants this where you can start https://www.fbo.gov/?s=home&tab=list&mode=list 
  4. NonProfitExpert.com, detailed listing of grants and good information for grant seekers; review the categories listed on the left hand side.    http://www.nonprofitexpert.com/federal_grants.htm 
  5. Jon Harrison and Michigan State University have a comprehensive list of funders alphabetized by subject http://staff.lib.msu.edu/harris23/grants/2sgalpha.htm
  6. Youth Grants for NPOs working  in that service area http://www.youthtoday.org/grants.cfm
  7. Rural Assistance Center has an excellent directory of foundations with funding links by topics, and links to state resources http://www.raconline.org/funding/funding_topic.php  
  8. Common Grants material has a list of foundations that accept their universal grant application form. The list of foundations is in alphabetical order and is searchable by location, program type and beneficiary http://www.commongrants.com/participating-funders    
  9. Meyer Foundation’s list about funding opportunities, outside Meyer, includes information on ways to strengthen nonprofit organizations, research about people and communities that Meyer cares about, and useful links for nonprofits and grantmakers
  10. FundsNet Services.com has excellent information about grants and you can browse through categories of grants from Animal & Wildlife Grants to Women Grants - http://www.fundsnetservices.com/   
  11. Women’s Funding Network connects and strengthens more than 160 organizations that fund women’s solutions across the globe http://www.wfnet.org/the-network/member-directory  
  12. Google directory of foundations in alphabetical order, look at the links to categories to save some time http://directory.google.com/alpha/Top/Society/Philanthropy/Grants/Grant-Making_Foundations/  
  13. Grant Makers in Health has partners listed and linked alphabetically -http://www.gih.org/link_no_cat2664/link_no_cat.htm  
  14. Environmental Grantmaker Association has an alphabetical list and links - http://www.ega.org/funders/funder.php?op=list 
  15. Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation funders are listed at the University of Wisconsin grants’ library http://grants.library.wisc.edu/organizations/animals.html   
  16. California Polytechnic State University, listed by subject in alphabetical order -   http://www.calpoly.edu/~grants/3_FoundSubj.html   
  17. Foundation Center has a list of the 100 largest U.S. grantmaking foundations ranked by the market value of their assets, based on the most current audited financial data in the Foundation Center's database as of April 27, 2011. http://fdncenter.org/findfunders/topfunders/top100assets.html  
  18. ChristianGrants.com features links by key words and by work projects including building campaigns, program support, outreach ministries and more http://www.christiangrants.com/   
  19. National Association for the Exchange of Industrial Resources (NAEIR) features a catalog of donated merchandise for supplies http://www.naeir.org/    
  20. A reader suggested - ScanGrants™ is designed to facilitate the search for funding sources to enhance individual and community health – medical researchers, social workers, nurses, students, community-based health educators, academics and others

For international grants:

  1. Canada’s CharityVillage has a section with a list of grantors in alphabetical order, searchable by categories http://www.charityvillage.com/cv/nonpr/nonpr17.asp and 

    Canadian international grants - http://www.charityvillage.com/cv/nonpr/nonpr9.html#sep1211 

  2. Canada funders can be found on FundsNet Services.com http://www.fundsnetservices.com/searchresult.php?sbcat_id=29    
  3. Nobel Peace Prize has a list of international foundations http://www.nobelpeaceforum.org/grantsandrelatedresources.htm   
  4. Grants from foundations aimed at United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and other international funders at Fundsnet Services.com  http://www.fundsnetservices.com/showcats.php?sbcat_id=10  
  5. Jon Harrison's list of Women in International Development, a compilation of web pages of potential interest to NGOs seeking funding opportunities related to women in international development- http://staff.lib.msu.edu/harris23/grants/2wid.htm 
  6. The International Human Rights Funders Group has a grants tool designed to enable both grantmakers and grantseekers to search for human rights funders by several key criteria: areas of rights funding, activities supported and geographic focus at http://ihrfg.org/funder-directory-search 
  7. Grant Makers without Borders does not provide grants but does have an excellent directory of foundations and other organizations interested in international grantmaking http://www.internationaldonors.org/advicegs/index.htm   
  8. LGBTQ Funders Directory provides information on funders of organizations and projects working with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) communities. All of the groups included in the directory have provided financial support, of varying types, to LGBTQ programs. http://www.lgbtfunders.org/seekers/directory.cfm 
  9. ChristianGrants.com features international opportunities with links by key words and by work projects including building campaigns, program support, outreach ministries and more http://www.christiangrants.com/ 
  10. Grantmakers Online.com, an interactive database of world-wide funders, in Beta form, and a little clumsy but highly useful, http://www.grantmakersonline.com/
For other international listing see the companion piece, below, about free e-newsletters that provides timely notice of grant opportunities -

Through the Looking-Glass for International Grant Opportunities

For e-newsletters about grants, see

How to Find Grant Opportunities

Are you sure your organization is ready to receive and appropriately account for the assistance from a grant? Before you say “Yes”, please read this

One Phase of Nonprofit Organizational Readiness for Grant Funding – Recordkeeping  

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

How to Find Grant Opportunities

Every leader, employee, board member and volunteer with a nonprofit, tax exempt, nongovernmental organization is looking for grants. This Blog post will give you e-newsletters and two Twitter accounts where you can receive grant and scholarship information daily or weekly at no cost.

There are thousands of local, state, regional and national foundations and corporations that accept grant proposals. But each has its own requirements, process, mission, eligibility, forms, reporting and accountability standards. The Foundation Center and others have large data bases that are for sale.  But there are source to find grant opportunities that cost nothing. There are e-newsletters and Twitter messages available to keep you up to date on many grant possibilities.  How do you keep up with Federal sources of grants? Again there are free e-newsletters available.

You should also be alert to your state or province government and local foundations that provide grants. Your local United Way or similar organization may have information they are willing to share.  

The most difficult process to secure funding for nonprofits is through the grant writing activity. Folks starting out should first have in place a resource development plan that includes grant seeking and also, fund (friend-) raising, use of social media, events, capital funding, social enterprise (not for everyone), volunteers, collect dues, user fees, contracts for service, sell products, equipment donations and so on.  

The place to start seeking grants is in your local delivery area, town, city, county, parish, province, state. Developing relationships and friends is absolutely critical, not only for fundraising but also for securing grants and finding leads to sources of funding. Making friends and developing contacts takes work by the board, volunteers and staff.  The organization has to develop spheres of influence among its supporters, people who share the organization’s mission, activities and values.   

There are a number of places to find information easily and on the cheap...no money. There are a number of e-mail notices about grants which I am listing here. One source of grant funds is corporate giving such as grocery chains, utility companies, pharmaceutical companies, national products and others. I have not found any common source for that information. It takes digging.

Corporations are more likely to give to programs that are in their community, an office, manufacturing plant, research and development center, any physical presence. A corporation is even more likely to provide support if an employee volunteers or serves on the board of the organization.

Nongovernmental organizations (NGO) in Third World countries should see where there are international companies, offices, excavation, mining, research and development, manufacturing, security and so on. They may provide support, not always money, for the project that matches up with their business model. I am sensitive to the fact that many international companies can be the source of problems in Third World countries.  I have seen, however, some international companies not only from the US but also Sweden, Norway, Australia, India provide help to NGOs and provide help for individual children in need of serious medical attention when referred by a NGO.

Program precedes money. Planning precedes program. You start by doing something toward your mission. There are no funders sitting around looking for people to fund. They rarely fund start-ups. They are looking for organizations that meet THEIR mission and requirements. See

For daily, instant and timely grant notices you can follow me on Twitter, @dgriesmann  

For daily scholarship information opportunities, follow @ScholarshipsGL on Twitter  

Federal grant notices by agency, a hit-and-miss proposition but absolutely valuable - http://www07.grants.gov/applicants/email_subscription.jsp   

Federal Register Table of Contents published daily - Lengthy listing of the Federal government at work, meeting announcements, and publications about rules and so on. This used to be the only place to find grants but not any longer. Still, I have found grants through this source not listed elsewhere. It will take about 1-3 minutes to scan the Table of Contents, click on Online mailing list archives,   http://listserv.access.gpo.gov/

GrantsAlert.com for education grants from Joseph B Mizereck and Associates Inc also features fellowships and awards for educators http://www.grantsalert.com/  

FundingAlert from the Washington DC Mayor's Office of Partnerships, small number of listings, mostly Federal but I have found some gems here http://opgs.dc.gov/opgd/cwp/view,a,1318,q,587660,opgdNav,%7C34802%7C.asp

GrantStation through their Insider newsletter or multiple sources, small number of listings but very helpful with descriptions, deadlines and links, http://www.grantstation.com/
Youth Service America, sign up for newsletters, http://ysa.org/about 
National Human Services Assembly, sign up for newsletter, http://nassembly.org/
Capital Venture from Linda Lysakowski http://www.cvfundraising.com/

Miami-Dade Grant Opportunities newsletter, an excellent source with brief descriptions, deadlines and links by categories http://miamidade.gov/wps/portal/Main/grantsmembers

Foundation Center PND RFP Bulletin http://foundationcenter.org/newsletters/

For international grants:

UK Office for Civil Society Funding Central newsletter , create a profile and subscribe to the newsletter “Reminders of approaching deadlines ” or one  that interests you,  http://www.fundingcentral.org.uk/profile.aspx 

Are you sure your organization is ready to receive and appropriately account for the assistance from a grant? Before you say “Yes”, please read this 

One Phase of Nonprofit Organizational Readiness for Grant Funding – Recordkeeping  
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