The Grants Databases Open Lab workshops introduce me to so many interesting and worthy projects that the nonprofit community are hoping to implement to improve our community's well-being. Sometimes I hear from folks who are just starting to get involved with their organization's fundraising because of a big goal to build a new community center or purchase a large piece of equipment that will help the nonprofit achieve its mission. It's at times like these that I have to give them the bad news:
Capital campaigns are some of the hardest causes to raise money for from private foundations. The grants databases we have (The Foundation Directory Online and the Arizona Guide to Grants) do list some funders that will consider capital campaign proposals. However, the best way to ensure your capital campaign request is seriously considered is to approach private foundations and corporate grant makers that you have a strong history and relationship with. Building these things takes time, and you still might not get the grant. However, one way to ensure a more favorable response is to have already achieved a large part of your capital campaign's goal from your individual supporters.
We recently had Chris Looney, a fundraising consultant from southern California, speak at the library about what you should expect when you're doing a capital campaign. You can watch the recordings here:
If you need more step-by-step instructions, try checking out one of our books!