Getting Started in Philanthropy

Share tips, information and thoughts with your peers:  Student Bulletin Board 

Making smart grants means making smart choices. Doing research and finding relevant information about community organizations is an important part of philanthropy; sometimes knowing where to start is the hard part. The Jumpstart Our Youth funding partners, who practice philanthropy as part of everyday business, have put together a list of resources to help you gather information.  Here you can get tips on how to find appropriate nonprofits, find out about their missions, budgets and program expenses.

Philanthropists will also tell you that personal relationships and experiences also matter – a lot – and are useful in making decisions. Do your friends, family or neighbors benefit from an organization that helps out locally? Mentoring, food pantry, teen parenting education, clothing provider, summer camp scholarship, wilderness education, leadership development .  . . the list of youth and family issues addressed by community nonprofits is long and varied. Sometimes we may interact with an organization without realizing it would be eligible for a JOY grant.

Here are some FAQs that may lead you to new online resources as you launch your search. If you find that some are really helpful – share them with your JMG peers at the student bulletin board. If you come across others that you think should be listed here or if these here don’t work well for you let us know at Good luck!

  1. How do we find nonprofit organizations in our area?
  2. How do we know if an organization is a nonprofit organization?
  3. How can I find more detailed information about an organization’s budget and activities?
  4. How can I find out what other philanthropists and foundations in Maine are doing?
  5. Where can I find information about community service?

JOY Grants >> 2009-12