So You Think You Want to Start a Nonprofit?

Is your New Year's resolution to start a nonprofit and save the world (or at least a little piece of it)? The SLPL Grants & Foundation Center opens 2020 with the 2 part program "So You Think You Want to Start a Nonprofit?" with Sue Greenberg from Volunteer Lawyers & Accountants for the Arts and Tracy James from Legal Services of Eastern Missouri. Sue and Tracy will provide helpful hints, practical checklists, success stories, and some cautionary tales (spoiler: the answer to the question posed in the first session: "Is starting a nonprofit right for you?" may very well be "NO!"). NEW THIS YEAR: the programs will include an overview of fiscal sponsorship, tips on building your first board of directors, and suggestions on how to develop your nonprofit’s budget.

Social Startup Success

Nonprofit Kit for Dummies

The Happy, Healthy Nonprofit

The Library offers a number of resources with respect to starting and succeeding with your nonprofit, including of course books - we've included some suggested titles above, or you can search the SLPL catalog to find both physical & digital books to check out. The Library also offers some great online tools that can be accessed with a St. Louis Public Library card, including Gale Online Courses, which are 6 week online courses that are free with your library card and can be taken remotely and/or at the Library. If you enter the word "nonprofit" in the search box, you'll see several course offerings, including "Starting a Nonprofit." Another Gale product available through the Library website is Gale Business: Plan Builder, an online tool that will help a new or existing nonprofit or small business develop their business plan and address other important practical considerations - it helps take a dream ("I'm going to save ALL the puppies!") to a reality ("We're going to need a building, and some vehicles, and a source of pet food and veterinary care, and insurance, and volunteers...."). Both can be accessed through the Library's website on the "Digital Resources" tab, click on the letter "G" under "A-Z Resources"

Another online tool that can help as you try to determine how to proceed if you have decided you DO want to start a nonprofit is the Nonprofit Startup Assessment tool on Candid's GrantSpace website. The Assessment asks a series of questions regarding where you are in the process and what you hope to accomplish and then points you to resources and next steps. Candid is the organization behind the Foundation Directory Online (FDO) database, which is available at SLPL Central to help nonprofits hunt for potential grant money. FDO can also be useful, however, if you decide you DON'T want to start a nonprofit, but would rather find an existing nonprofit that is working toward alleviating the same problem that you had your eye on and work with them, or if you need a more seasoned nonprofit to partner with as a fiscal sponsor. ("What is a fiscal sponsor?" you ask? Come to the GFC program in January to find out from Sue and Tracy, and/or read this Knowledge Base piece on the topic from GrantSpace.)

We hope to see you at the programs in January (use this link to learn more & to register) and at the Grants and Foundation Center at Central Library sometime in 2020 (call 314 539-0357 or email with any questions or to set up an appointment). Happy New Year!

We welcome your respectful and on-topic comments and questions in this limited public forum. To find out more, please see Appropriate Use When Posting Content. Community-contributed content represents the views of the user, not those of St. Louis Public Library