Foundation giving has increased by 11% between 2010 and 2011 to $24.6 billion total1. Foundations generally give out less money than government grants, the medium being $25,000, but usually giving less than $10,000. Still Foundations gave out 149,518 grants in 2011 which makes this a great source for funding. Most foundations want to support programs and services rather than building and operating funds.
There are 5 main types of foundations:
Community Foundations: Mainly funded by bequests and are developed to address problems and interests in a certain community (state, zip, city).
National General Purpose Foundations: Large foundations that give in several subject areas, give grants from broad-scale plans, look for highly visible and creative projects. (Examples of a National Foundation: Ford Foundation, Bank of America Foundation...)
Special Purpose Foundations: These foundations are set-up to fund only a specific interest, and will evaluate proposals based on how much impact your program will have on their concern.
Family Foundations: Usually directed at a certain geographical area or interest. These foundations are susceptible to the influence of board members, friends, and popular causes.
Corporate Foundations: Fund non-controversial grants, usually only give in areas of operation, give to invest in their community and to improve relationships with their stake/stockholders.
Library Resources: How to find Foundation Funding Opportunities
The Foundation Center Online Professional (In Library Use Only)
The Foundation Directory Online Professional provides access to an unprecedented wealth of timely, comprehensive information on grantmakers and their grants. Included is a database of over 92,000 foundations, corporate giving programs, and grantmaking public charities in the U.S.; a database of nearly 3,600 sponsoring companies, offering a quick pathway to corporate funders; a database of over 1.3 million recently awarded grants; and a keyword-searchable database of over 527,000 recently filed IRS Forms 990 and 990-PF.
The Foundation Directory
Np R361.06025 Foundation at SP
The Foundation Directory offers information on the nation's top 10,000 foundations by total giving. It also includes descriptions on over 51,000 selected grants.