The quality of life on our earth is depreciating with every passing second as vandalism and destruction take over humanity. The world is anything but perfect and is far from being an ideal place to live in. Scientists presume that our planet is nearing an apocalypse and if you ask me why I’ll tell you to look around and stay witness to the crimes that we humans are committing against nature on a daily basis.
With the repeated breach of ethics, the need for charitable organizations fighting for a cause has seen a steady rise. Philanthropy is the only ray of hope to cure this world of the daily malpractices. So, if you are a college graduate and a benevolent person who is looking for a way to support a cause and help humankind, then establishing a charitable organization can be considered as a feasible option.
If you are thinking of entering the world of charity, you must make acquaintance with the things that are essential for opening a non-profitable organization. And that is precisely what I am here to inform you about – the nitty-gritty of this arena of entrepreneurship before you take a step forward to make lives better.
Although the name of a charitable organization suggests non-profit, you must not believe the fact that opening a charitable organization has zero benefits in store for you. When you donate and make others’ lives better, the government sees to it that you are benefitted too.
Here are some of the benefits that you are going to enjoy when you start a charitable organization:
- Recognition And Trust
Since charity and philanthropy are known for the honest attempt to make life better, you are not going to have any problem when it comes to raising funds for your company. As opposed to getting sponsors for a profitable organization, a philanthropic entrepreneur like you needs to convince your sponsors to invest in your start-up. The bright side of the task is that several generous souls are always ready to invest for a cause.
- Benefits Of Tax Relief
This is a significant reason why most successful business personalities donate to charities – TAX RELIEF! Well, of course, they are benevolent people who want to do good for the society, but one cannot just deny the tax benefits. So, you can only imagine the benefits of establishing a charitable trust, right? A non-profit organization enjoys exemption from corporate tax along with an 80% mandatory relief from business taxes. Since people who will be making donations are entitled to get a “Gift Aid” relief, you are more likely to find sponsors. You are also entitled to stamp duty land tax relief on freehold property bought for charitable purposes.
You would be glad to know that certain financial institutions grant financing only to organizations that are engaged in charitable activities. So, funding should not be a problem at all.
5 Steps to open a Charitable Organization
Now that you know what opening an NGO has in store for you; let us now get down to the technical details of starting a charitable establishment. As easy as it may sound, opening a non-profit company can be quite a challenging procedure. To make it less complicated for you, I have taken the liberty to enumerate the process into quick steps. So, let us see what the steps are, shall we?
Step 1: Choose a Cause First
You cannot just start a non-profit organization without having sight of what you are supporting. You must zero down to what you want to fight against. Is it woman trafficking or child labor that you want to fight against? Choose a vision and then work out a plan around the noble cause. While philanthropy should come from the heart, I would still suggest that you do a quick research about the areas that need looking into and then decide on what you want your organization to do and for whom, what service should it provide and how. It is only then that you will be able to set goals that you want to achieve after a particular period.
Step 2: Decide a Name For Your Charitable Trust
Like any other start-up – be it a profit-making or a non-profit one – you must give your organization a name that explicitly puts out the services that it provides. So when it comes to naming an NGO, you must be very clear and deliberately avoid using complicated names. If you are fighting for animal rights, a name like ‘Protect the Wild’ will make sense and will clearly portray your intentions. If your organization provides aid to patients of cancer, you can also name your charity in the name of a famous social activist who has fought for the similar cause, for example, the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation fights against AIDS.
Step 3: Register Under 501 (c) (3)
In order to establish a charitable organization, you need to register under the stated code of law as per the country you want to establish it. If you’re going to open an NGO in the States, then you have to get the organization registered under the IRS code 501 (c) (3). I would suggest that you hire a lawyer who is experienced and thorough with the legal formalities involved in the establishment of a nonprofit organization.
Step 4: Fundraising
Since you are a college graduate, it is implausible to expect you to be able to put your own funds into the charity that you are going to find. The next best option is to raise support from sponsors. Now, you can initially ask your friends and relatives to donate for your foundation, but that certainly is not going to be enough. If you see from a broader spectrum, you will soon need funds from bigger organizations as well as other foundations. To convince third-party sponsors, you will need a good plan that explains the mission you are on and how it is justified. You can create an excellent PowerPoint presentation that can highlight every objective of your organization. But, I must warn you that this is going to be quite a slow process, so you must be very patient.
Step 5: Establish an Advisory Board
If you are just out of college, it is not possible for you to know the technicalities of running an NGO. As an entrepreneur, you lack the experience, and therefore you have to establish a board consisting of people whose expertise can prove to be invaluable for your mission. To raise funds and mobilize them correctly – the panel of experts should be able to help you in the best ways. Now, when it comes to establishing an advisory board, I would suggest that you choose people who have been involved with a foundation before. Also, try to keep it small.
Remember, the above steps are not the end of the process. After the funds have been raised, you must know how to use them properly. Get yourself an accountant who can keep you updated about the cash inflows and outflows so that you can ascertain the success of your charity establishment. Make sure that the people working in the NGO are ready to work without a salary. And I repeat this – be very patient. There will be times when you will question yourself and your ideologies, but you will have to stick through. With monetary benefits out of the equation, you cannot really expect people to trust and immediately support your cause. Give it some time to survive and breath.
8 Tips To Make Your Charitable Foundation Successful
Make your charitable foundation a success by staying faithful to the cause and supporting it selflessly. If you have the passion for it, nobody can stop you. However, there are other things too that you can do to make it a success. You may have a great idea of supporting a cause that you think needs to be attended to, but that is not enough.
Here are some tips that can surely make your idea a game-changer in the world of non-profitable organizations.
Be The Change-Maker
There are approximately millions of non-profit organizations throughout the whole world. So, if you are going to add to the list, you might as well choose a cause that people can identify with. When you support a cause, you must see how serious it is and whether your initiative can solve it at all. Unless you feel that your foundation can make a difference, there is no point in starting an NGO. Since you will have to face competition when it comes to fundraising, you must come up with an idea or have a look at sample college essays that people are likely to support and got help.
A Business Plan Is a Must
Although a non-profit organization functions differently than a normal startup, it is still essential that you devise a business plan that explains the mission and the purpose of the firm. It is only when your plan is an honest and sincere one, the sponsors will think of investing in your foundation. Use the plan to mention the scale of operations that you want to achieve.
Plan Your Fundraising
Raising funds for a profit-making organization is very different than getting sponsors for a charitable foundation. To start with, investors know that they can get back the finance that they have invested in your startup when the company becomes successful. But with a charitable organization in question, other than the tax reliefs, charity donations do not have much to offer. So you need to devise a plan about the various channels that you can use to raise money. I would recommend you to seek help from an expert who can guide you through the entire process.
Get a Business And Finance Expert To Be Your Mentor
You cannot look into every little detail of the NGO’s foundation. There are various complications when it comes to an NGO. There are tax exempts that you need to apply for and ascertain the VAT that you are liable to pay. There are several VAT exemptions and who better than a business expert to handle these complicated issues for you. Also, as a registered charity, you will have to publicize the information about your activities, finances, and trustees. An accounting expert will be able to help you with this matter.
Start Your Website
In this era of digitalization, almost every venture has a website. Even the smallest of traders have an official website in the name of their business. Having a website makes your intentions more honest, and your foundation becomes more credible. This is also likely to bring in more funds as the donators and sponsors will be updated and familiar with your activities through your website. You can announce the outlines of your plan, your goals and your achievements on your website and use the site for online fundraising. With your contact information on the website, people will know where to reach you and how to donate. Also, tap the potential of social media and create and link handles to the website so that your supporters can follow you.
Communicate With Your Audience
Proper communication with your audience and donators is essential. You need to communicate the goals and objectives and how the contributions have made the foundation a success with your sponsors. This way, your audience will feel good and help you in bringing in bigger funds in the future. You need to keep your supporters and volunteers engaged so that they feel right about being a part of the cause.
Give Special Attention To The Name Of Your Foundation
I have said this earlier, and I repeat this again – choose a name that (a) puts forth the mission of the foundation clearly and (b) helps you stand out in the crowd. Choose a name that is memorable. You can name the foundation in memory of an activist who has fought for a similar cause. For example, if you are fighting against cancer, then you can use the name of a famous cancer patient who has survived cancer.
Advertise For Your Foundation
To reach out to more potential contributors, you need to advertise for your charitable foundation so that people who are interested will know about your organization. Advertising on local or national media channel gives your brand more credibility. Also, with a steady online presence, people are more likely to believe in your ingenuity.
I’ve worked in the charity sector before, and anyone who says that establishing a charitable organization is no less than a headache is not absolutely wrong. While there are different benefits of setting up a charity, there are many complications that you will have to deal with. So, I would recommend that you hire a lawyer who can help you with it. Having said that, I wish you all the best for your startup, and I hope there are many youngsters like you who still think about the social good and want to do something to help make the world a better place.
Author Bio: Adam Paul is a business expert who is associated with multiple NGOs and extends help to entrepreneurs and business students with their essay helpthrough Allessaywriter.com. Besides being an activist, she is also an acclaimed writer and blogger.