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Grants can be an important part of funding for your nonprofit organization. Whether you’re seeking operating grants for general support or special project grants for a new initiative, you need to identify your best prospects so you can focus your efforts. Here are a few ideas on where to start finding grant opportunities.

The Foundation Center:

It’s one of the leading sources of information about philanthropy. You can access many of its resources for free. That includes the Foundation Directory Online (FDO) Free that allows you to search basic profiles and IRS Forms 990-PF for almost 90,000 grantmakers. If grants are a major source of your support, then you may want to subscribe for additional services. You can search for funders by geographic area, subject interests, and many other criteria. In addition to online research through Foundation Center, be sure to explore any personal connections who may be willing to help provide introductions or advice about grantmakers they know.


To research federal grant programs, go to The application and reporting process for government grants is usually time-consuming. It is more detailed than private or corporate foundations. However, the government is a major source of funding for many nonprofits.

Religious Programs:

If you’re a faith-based organization you may want to explore philanthropic programs operated by your religious site. Once again, personal contacts including your board members, donors, and employees may be able to advise you on who to contact and what approach to take.

Community Foundations:

These organizations provide valuable grant opportunities for local nonprofits serving their area. In addition, many family foundations set up donor-advised funds at community foundations so you may already have donors who give through them.

Learn More About Finding Grant Opportunities

Mainstream Nonprofit Solutions provides efficient, effective administrative services so nonprofits like you can focus on your clients. Contact us to discuss our spectrum of solutions including information technology, finance, and program support.