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Monthly Archives: January 2013

Opportunity Watch: Volunteer Engagement Week

Since Volunteer Canada and Charity Village are partnering up to celebrate Volunteer Engagement Week, we thought we’d join in and show you some of the volunteer related grants with deadlines coming up in February.

The Interlake Foundation donates to nonprofit organizations that give back to the Interlake region in Manitoba. Specifically, Interlake Foundation focuses on projects that are volunteer run and does not fund salaries. Grants are usually for fixed term projects under $5,000. Proposals must be received by February 28th.

Community One Foundation’s Rainbow Grants have deadlines that are coming up soon. Rainbow Grants range from a maximum grant of $10,000 for nonprofit organizations or a smaller grant of $1,000 for individuals. Funding is for initiatives supporting sexual diversity related to education, health, human rights, arts & culture, or research & advocacy in Toronto and the GTA. Apply by February 18th.

If you want to hire some of your organization’s younger volunteers for summer 2013, take a look at this grant from the Government of Canada. Canada Summer Jobs funds nonprofit organizations, small businesses and public employers to hire students ages 15-30 who are returning to school. Applications for 2013 are open from February 1st to 28th.

Be sure to check Charity Village and Volunteer Canada‘s site from January 21st to 25th for live online chats and articles about Volunteer Engagement Week.

Good Luck and Happy Volunteer Engagement Week!

Improve Your Fundraising – Support Your Fundraisers

How well does your organization support its fundraising team? Judging by some recent blog posts, there is a good chance that the support could be better.

Friday’s post on Katya’s Nonprofit Marketing Blog had some really good ideas about how to improve nonprofit fundraising. Katya’s message boils down to two points. First, the whole organization has to embrace fundraising as an important part of everyone’s job and second, that fundraisers have to be well trained.

One great way to support your fundraisers is to give them good training. And if you are a fundraiser, make sure you keep yourself up to date. In her post, Katya writes that:

One in four executive directors (24%) in the CompassPoint report said their development directors have no experience or are novice at “current and prospective donor research.” Among the smallest nonprofits, the number was 32%.

If you, or your development director, fall into that 24 or 32%, here are some resources to boost your fundraising techniques:

  • We wrote a Fundraising Research Guide and we hope you find it helpful! It’s free and focuses on donor research, which is the area where Katya found that fundraisers needed the most improvement. It outlines a great research plan for any fundraiser and has pro-tips for those using Fundtracker.
  • Charity Village offers a wide variety of online courses so that your fundraisers can learn at their own pace. They offer How Fundraising Works, to provide a general overview, as well as courses that focus on specific areas of improvement such as, Grantseeking and Planned Giving.
  • There is a free course in proposal writing from The Foundation Center in the United States that is accessible in either French or English as well as in Chinease, Portuguese, Spanish and Russian! It is short, but this course is a good place to start – or to use for a quick refresher.

These are just a few good places to start, but the important part is that your fundraisers feel well-supported and have the right skills.

Thanks Katya, for inspiring today’s post! Your blog is definitely a great place to learn a lot about fundraising.

Some arts grant deadlines…

February 1 is a popular deadline for grant proposals and applications related to all aspects of the arts community. In addition to several upcoming deadlines for individual artists, we found the following deadlines that may be interesting for arts-related non-profits.

Canada Council for the Arts: Project Grants to Professional Orchestras: this is a program designed to support particular projects as opposed to operating funds, which are granted under a separate program. These grants are to, “assist with selected costs associated with a particular orchestral activity or event taking place in a defined and concentrated period of time, with a particular interest for initiatives involving Canadian creation, development of young audiences and outreach/dissemination.”

Ontario Arts Council’s Arts Service Organizations Grants: the purpose of these grants is to provide operating support for, “not-for-profit organizations and collectives dedicated to services for artists and arts organizations in Ontario.” There are slightly different requirements for requests under or over $30K, and organizations may be eligible for multi-year operating grants. Please note that the granting organization requests that all applicants contact the grant officer before submitting an application.

February 1 is also the deadline for another interesting program from the Ontario Arts Council: Aboriginal Artists in Communities. This program, “supports projects that bring together professional Aboriginal artist(s) to work with individuals or groups of people from a community, to create, experience or present artistic work.” In this case as well, applicants must contact the grant officer in advance of the deadline.

Good luck!