Looking for nonprofits near you? Perhaps you are thinking of starting a new nonprofit but, before you do, you want to see if there’s already one with a similar mission. Maybe you are a staff member or volunteer of an existing nonprofit and you are looking for nonprofits that complement what you do or with whom you could collaborate or share resources. Here are three online databases that can help you research nonprofits in your area—or elsewhere!
GuideStar has been around for years and provides a database of charities and nonprofits classified in the following nine groups: Arts, Culture and Humanities, Education and Research, Environment and Animals, Health, Human Services, International, Public, Societal Benefit, Religion, and that old faithful, “Other.” Each main category is broken down into various subcategories. You can search by state and city, but not by county without purchasing a subscription.
GreatNonprofits bills itself as “the leading platform for community-sourced stories about nonprofits.” Like GuideStar, you can search by geography (state and city). You can also search on a long list of issue areas from AIDS to Zika Virus. What sets GreatNonprofits apart are the individual reviews and ratings submitted by individuals who have experienced services or volunteered for various organizations.
Cause IQ provides the most sophisticated queries of these three services. Create a free account and you can search using many filters. For example, the first filter I applied was to limit organizations to those in the “San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles metro area.” That yielded 1, 845 nonprofits. Then I applied the additional filter “501(c)3.” That brought my total down to 1,465. I limited that set to “Animal organizations” which reduced my group to 53. Finally, I excluded organizations that filed a 990-N tax form (i.e. those with gross annual receipts of $50,000 or less). The result: a list of 28 animal organizations in the San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles area with 501(c)3 status and annual income of over $50,000.
Whether you’re searching nearby or afar, add these tools to your research kit.