Funds for non profits are notoriously unreliable. Some years, if there is a president who is friendly towards charitable work, research, and other socially beneficial programs, grants for non profit organization are plentiful.
As a matter of fact, some administrations make non profit grants so available that not all of the money is used up by the end of the term! All it takes, however, is one war hawk coming into office to ruin the entire non profit culture. Not for profit groups, ranging from researchers to charitable organizations to environmental welfare groups, go out of business left and right. In these chaotic and cataclysmic presidential terms, decades of work can be lost.
That is why securing a reliable and diverse source of grants for non profit organizations is so important. Many nonprofit organization directors put all their eggs in one basket. Sometimes they rely heavily on government grants, one of the biggest mistakes that you can make. Other times, they put their faith in one or two large private donations supported by a campaign of public fund raising.
Although the latter approach is definitely the more favorable of the two, it has its drawbacks as well. Relying on a grant for non profit organizations from a charitable trust or foundation run by an individual is often a risky venture. One change of heart by one individual donor and the whole thing can fall through!
Unfortunately, there is no easy solution to the problems of grants for non profit organizations. All in all, it depends on the nature of your group. For many research organizations or groups that target more worldwide issues, non profit organization grants can be a pretty reliable and long-lasting source of funding. The research being done might be seen as broadly valuable and not subject to the whims of government offices. The issues being addressed might be sweeping social ills not likely to change completely anytime soon.
For smaller groups, however, grants for non profit organizations must be supported by robust fund raising campaigns. If you want to see support, for example, an individual watershed, you need to convince the community that it is in their interest to protect their local environment.
Not only does this make more sense financially than seeking out a single grant for a non profit organization, but it also encourages community participation, something which strengthens and legitimizes any nonprofit.
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