Finding Local Grants

A nonprofit has a better chance of a grant if the foundation has a presence in the area where the nonprofit is located and operates.

When I’m out in local shopping areas, I note the names of chain stores.* At home, I put “foundation” at the end of the name and most times there’s a website for a grant application.

I could find business names with an online search. But seeing the physical appearance of the building tells me a lot about the business and whether they will fund grants. If the building is run-down looking, the company has probably changed its focus away from that store or the store manager has a negative opinion. The chance of a grant is low.

Besides, I would not want the nonprofit to receive a grant from a business that looks run-down. I look for stores that have customers, a clean appearance, and are stocked with merchandise. I look for a positive appearance.

After I select a business and review their website to make sure the nonprofit qualifies for a grant, I contact the store manager.

While grant applications go to corporate headquarters for approval, the local manager usually has influence in the approval process. By getting the manager’s support, the nonprofit has a better chance for success.

A local grant is a mutual relationship between a business and a nonprofit. Not only does the business give back to the community where their customers come, but they can advertise that they helped the nonprofit.

I like working with local business managers who want to help the community. Even if their company does not approve the grant, there are lots of ways a business can help a nonprofit.

* Sorry, but local small businesses usually do not have foundations.

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