Are you doing business in the Portland metro area? Do you want to identify movers and shakers in our local business community? For the past 30 years, the Portland Business Journal's Book of Lists has established itself as a key tool for doing business in the area. This year's list is "by far the most comprehensive edition to date" according to their publisher, Craig Wessel. A wide range of industry sectors are included to help you identify executives and companies who are major players in their field. In addition to the Book of Lists, the Portland Business Journal also provides comprehensive coverage of business news and information for the Portland area. Free remote access is available with a Multnomah County Library card and password. Apply online if you don't already have a Multnomah County Library card, and open the door to this - and many other subscription-based resources at no charge.
While the Better Business Bureau recommends donors avoid any charity spending less than 65 percent of their money on their charitable mission, a small but persistent group of charities continue to spend most of their money on fundraising and administration. A groundbreaking new law passed in Oregon in 2013, one aimed at protecting donors from charities that spend too little on their charitable programs and services. House Bill 2060 eliminates the state income tax deduction for donors who give money to charities that fail to spend at least 30 percent of their donations on their charitable mission. For charities that spend more than 70 percent of donations on management and fundraising, Oregonians who donate to them cannot not take state income-tax deductions on those gifts.
The Nonprofit Association of Oregon has compiled a list of Frequently Asked Questions for nonprofit organizations regarding the new law and The Oregon Attorney General's office compiles an annual list of the 20 Worst Charities that are registered to do business in Oregon. To find out how much of your donation will go to a charity’s actual purpose, search the Oregon Department of Justice's database of registered charities.
Multnomah County Library subscribes to Guidestar, a database available at the Central Library that provides information on programs and finances of charities and nonprofits. Need help finding information on your favorite charity? Librarians are happy to help!
If you're part of a nonprofit organization, you've probably heard about or explored the world of foundation grants. But with so many nonprofits competing for funding, how can you increase your chances of getting chosen? Perhaps you've been asking the following questions:
- What are the main characteristics of successful funding proposals?
- Increasingly I see foundations say they don't accept unsolicited proposals. How am I supposed to get a grant?
- If I'm turned down, can I try again?
- Do funder guidelines describe accurately what they fund?
Author Martin Teitel answers these questions and more in his Guidestar article Questions I'm Most Often Asked about Winning Foundation Grants.
7 Reasons Your Grant Proposals Are Being Rejected
- You don't write for your audience.
- You aren't proofreading enough.
- You aren't thorough enough.
- Your proposal contains too much fluff.
- You have a goal but no plan.
- You aren't providing enough data.
- You are using unreasonable budgets.
Every nonprofit has to start somewhere and the library is a great first stop. Since 1973, Multnomah County Library has been part of the Foundation Center's Funding Information Network, a nonprofit organization established in 1956 concerned exclusively with gathering, analyzing and disseminating information on philanthropic foundations. Foundation Center libraries are located throughout the United States.
Via our Nonprofit Resource Center, Multnomah County Library makes the publications of the Foundation Center available to the public along with other materials on foundations, corporate philanthropy, government grants, proposal writing, fundraising and nonprofit management. Library staff provide help in using these materials, and brief reference questions can be answered by telephone. Some of the indexes and directories published by the Foundation Center are also available online. Multnomah County Library provides access to these online Foundation Directory resources, including Foundation Directory Online Professional, a database of nearly 100,000 U.S.-based foundations, grantmaking public charities, and corporate givers and IRS 990s, has federal grant information and offers periodicals, newsletters and the Foundation Center's Web site, which contains current information on nonprofit management, grantmakers, news and events. And here are a few more handy sites that will help you track down just the right way to kick off your cause.