Following on the heels of the cause-marketing extravaganza that is October’s Breast Cancer Awareness month, the holiday giving season starts even before the Halloween candy wrappers have been swept from the sidewalks. Whether giving to a charity as a thoughtful holiday gift or simply to take advantage of the end-of-year tax benefits, there are many ways to support your favorite cause from gifts of cash and stock to volunteering or even finding a new job in the nonprofit sector. Following are some resources to learn more about how to give – and how to get. Involved, that is.
Charity Navigator – Nonprofits are rated according to key metrics including financial health and organizational effectiveness.
Guidestar – Every nonprofit organization in the US is listed here and can be searched by issue, name, etc.
Founded by Cisco, Yahoo, and AOL, Network for Good links nonprofits and their supporters. Donors can find causes to support through contributions of time and money and nonprofits can access tools for fundraising, volunteer management and more.
Jobs, Volunteering etc:
Craigslist – Good for finding a new couch, a significant other … and volunteer work. On the left-side nav bar, check out Katrina Relief and the Craigslist Foundation, which has valuable resources for “emerging nonprofit leaders.”
Idealist – Jobs listings, volunteering, and other info about the sector.
Opportunity Knocks – The ultimate nonprofit job list.
Taproot Foundation – Marketing and other skilled professionals work in teams to donate their specialized skills to nonprofits in the form of “service grants” to create websites, design marketing materials and more.
Volunteermatch – Find a volunteer opportunity in your area that matches your skills and interests.
The Council on Foundations and Community Foundations of America partnered to create www.communityfoundations.net, a source of information about community foundations which are a great way to give to organizations in your local area while receiving the tax benefits of strategic philanthropy.
Independent Sector – A coalition for nonprofit and foundation leaders across the country
Foundation Center – A comprehensive resource for info about the philanthropic sector from the foundation perspective.
Education and Other Resources:
The Association of Fundraising Professionals is a national organization (with local chapters) for fundraisers to network and learn.
The Chronicle of Philanthropy is the main newspaper of the philanthropic sector.
Learn how to become a fundraiser at Indiana University’s Fundraising School.
Net Impact – An organization for MBA students and others who are interested in socially responsible business. With chapters nationwide, Net Impact offers valuable newsletters and job/internship listings.
The Nonprofit Times is a business newspaper for nonprofits that has especially good coverage of the sector’s use of new technology.
www.philanthropy.blogspot.com – Excellent coverage of trends and ideas in the nonprofit sector.