Find a Funder
There are thousands of sources of funding in the United States, public
(federal, state, or local government) and private (foundations, corporations,
and associations). The funder you select to approach for your project
must be a great
fit: its interests, capacity, and preferences
should match yours. Take the time to thoroughly research a funder before
approaching it with a letter of inquiry or proposal.
Types of Funders:
There are 26 federal agencies that offer over 1,000 grant programs each year. The purpose of these grant programs is to carry out funding initiatives authorized by law. While the sheer number of programs may seem intimidating, finding a grant to fund your project can be quite easy.
The best place to start looking for federal grants is www.grants.gov. On this site, you can find grants either by agency or by category. And you can sign up to be notified of new grant opportunities meeting your search criteria.
There are several state agencies that regularly offer new initiatives or grant opportunities. Links to the various agencies can be found on the state's website www.mass.gov. The state also hosts a state-wide solicitation database called Comm-PASS. This database provides public access to all state contracts. The state spends about $4,000,000 a year on contracts ranging from program trainers to shirt makers. Check it out!
It should be noted that grants from the state can be a bit more difficult to locate than federal grants since Massachusetts does not have a comprehensive grant database available online. It helps to become familiar with the various state agencies that provide funding, including the Department of Higher Education and the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.