Find the best funders for you for FREE

I am often asked where my go to places are for finding funders so I thought it would be worth popping them all in a blog! Most of the organisations I work with are quite small and rely on free resources so here they are.

Charity Registers

Charity Commission England and Wales LINK

Use for searching and researching!

It is searchable: Not everyone realises that you can search the register of charities in England and Wales.

Using a magnifying glass to find money

Searchable areas include

  • Classifications – Art, General Charity, Disability etc
  • Who the charity helps – Children, Older people, People with disabilities etc
  • How the charity helps – ‘Makes Grants to Organisations’
  • Geographical boxes

You can Download when under 10,000 records

You can research – find out more about the trusts and foundations that you want to apply to – more about that below!

I mainly use the England and Wales register but you may also need to look at

  • Scottish Charity Regulator OSCR HERE
  • The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland HERE 

Free resources

  1. ACF Foundation Giving Trends produces an annual publication reviewing top 300 grant makers
  2. Charity Excellence Framework FREE Funder Database – register and use it for free!
  3. 360 Degree Giving lists grant giving data from 142 funders. Find out who they are funding to do what and what the levels of support are
  4. Livery Companies Database – there are 110 livery companies, comprising London’s ancient and modern trade associations and guilds. Most have a charitable arm and not all just fund the trade they are the association of
  5. Directory of Social Change (DSC) has a paid subscription service called Funds Online – but did you know you can access the printed directories for FREE in the library?
  6. Grants Online There are various Subscription options but there is also a FREE Newsletter
  7. Competitors websites and accounts – who is funding similar organisation to you? Look at other organisations working with similar groups of people or other local groups.
  8. 101 Ways to Grow Your Prospect List by Alicia Granger – if my list is not enough check this list of 101 other places to look at 
  9. Your local council – many local councils have a funding officer or external funding team who may be able to help you with database searches. If you need the East Sussex or Brighton & Hove contacts (where I am based) let me know!

Join a Facebook group

I am in a number of Facebook groups where people share knowledge and information so get yourself into these groups!

  • Fundraising Chat HERE
  • Trust Fundraising Hub HERE
  • Sussex Fundraisers Group HERE
  • Fundraisers in Kent HERE

Looking at individual Charities, Trusts and Foundations

Once you have found someone who might fund you how might you find some more information about them? The Charity Commission Website is an essential resource.

  • Not all charities or trusts giving grants have a website.
  • Many will be happy to get a letter, email or phone call.
  • They are all required to provide certain information to the Charity Commission.

What can the accounts tell you?

  • Objectives and Aims and their public benefit
  • Grant making policy and any future plans
  • Grants given – who, amount given, length

Storing the data – things to think about

You will need to ensure that you keep the information that you gather about trusts and foundations that might fund you in a useful way.

  • Keep it simple – it is to make decisions and take action not to store all information
  • Can be a simple excel document
  • Regularly update and check the data

And when you are writing your bids – make sure you check out my article ‘5 common mistakes that annoy funders – what are funders pet peeves?’ HERE

Article originally posted on LinkedIn Here