Many local, under-funded non-profit organisations (NPOs) are struggling to deliver much-needed goods and services under tough economic conditions – but a lifeline could be found in a welcoming office in Woodstock, Cape Town.
Inyathelo, the South African Institute for Advancement, has a Funding Finder service which enables grant seekers to easily access details of nearly 1100 South African donors.
In addition, Inyathelo offers the opportunity to reach over 108 000 foreign donors. It is a member of the US-based Foundation Center’s Funding Information Network – one of only two organisations in Africa with this status.
“Funding Finder allows you to search for South African donors according to your sector (for example arts or agriculture) and then to drill down into a sub-sector, such as primary school education or emerging farmers,” said Inyathelo Operations Director Feryal Domingo.
“You can also specify the province in which you seek assistance, as well as the kind of activities you want funded – such as education, advocacy, infrastructure – and the type of donors you are looking for (corporates, private foundations, trusts and others).”
Funding Finder also offers useful hints and tips on how to approach donors; who to contact and how; and what activities and sectors particular donors don’t support. You can compare donors, keep a list of favourite donors and receive alerts every time information is updated.
Visitors to Inyathelo’s offices can access Funding Finder free of charge, but most find it more convenient to subscribe and access the service online at any time. A 12-month subscription costs R1710 (including VAT) for registered NPOs. For an individual or institution, the fee is R2850 (including VAT).
One of the users is Awatief Daniels, a prospect researcher at the University of the Western Cape. “Funding Finder is a tremendous resource – you can find all the necessary information on one site, saving days of work,” she said.
“At the press of a button, you can scour all of South Africa and find corporates, trusts and foundations you might never have been aware of. It provides far more detailed, specific information than you would find on a normal internet search.”
As part of the Funding Information Network, Inyathelo also provides the following Foundation Center resources:
An up-to-date edition of an extensive directory of overseas foundations, corporate giving programmes and grant-making public charities;
The Foundation Directory Online Professional database, which allows grant seekers to search for funders that focus on countries beyond the United States;
Foundation Grants to Individuals Online is a database of more than 8 500 funders that focus on individuals needing assistance for research, scholarships, fellowships and awards;
Philanthropy In/Sight is a tool that combines the Foundation Center’s data on grant makers and their grants with Google maps to tell the story of philanthropy. Users can create maps that reveal patterns of giving and funding relationships, helping them to identify areas of need; and
Access to online training for grant seekers via webinars.