I am in search of some tremendous stories about nonprofit organizations getting started. I use these stories for products and speeches I deliver on the topic of making a difference.
What is your favorite nonprofit startup story?
Please share the story in the comment section below no later than Sunday, August 3. It should have the ability to inspire and motivate others to give back in some way.
What will I do for your participation?
- Send a copy of Katya Andresen’s book Robin Hood Marketing: Stealing Corporate Savvy to Sell Just Causes to the nonprofit organization whose story I find most motivating and inspirational
- Write a blog post thanking you for your submission and highlighting some of my favorite stories received
Don’t delay and start writing your favorite nonprofit startup story now. I look forward to reading it!
6 thoughts on “Wanted: Nonprofit Startup Stories”
I twitted it for you. Hope it helps. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with.
I saw your tweet. Thanks for the help. I am looking forward to seeing what people post as well.
how we got started? it started with an idea…or rather a question…isn’t there a better way to deal with vacant housing in Buffalo, NY? can’t we create an alternative that puts money back into the community instead of burying it in the ground? can we create jobs for, educate, and train young adults AND improve the quality of life in our community with alternatives to abandoned lots and buildings? the answer is always yes, but you gotta work it, be creative, and do your homework…
we started the effort with all volunteers…for over 18 months we planned, organized, educated ourselves and others, initiated dialogue with the city, the community, and then we just started…we became demolition contractors, we started salvaging vacant houses with the collaboration of other demo contractors, we started selling materials part time…
funding? didn’t have any in the beginning…i bought a truck…we found a space to store materials for a low cost…we did get a small grant that helped with insurance from a local foundation…i think it was 10K…and then we just started approaching people for grants, etc. the money certainly is a means to an end, but it’s not the only means…unfortunately, when the business gets rolling you will need liability insurance and it’s not cheap…but it’s part of the deal…you need liability insurance to do anything these days…but don’t slap down any money until your ready to go to work…whether it be with volunteers or staff…
without visionaries supporting our vision it wouldn’t have happened…PUSH Buffalo allowed us to apply for grants under their mission until we gained out nonprofit status…we have received seed money from an echoing green fellowship, local foundations, the Western New York Delegation, and the NYS Department of Economic Development…a significant vote of confidence from the John R. Oishei Foundation gave us 2 years of major support…
our business model…we charge for our services…we deconstruct buildings and we try to bid the project to cover our expenses…we offer tax deductions to private clients for the value of the material we salvage…and we sell the salvaged material at a reasonable cost at our ReSource store…
we deconstructed our first house in april 07 with volunteers…now we have 6 full time staff…6 part-timers…a summer youth training program, and GED supportive youth training during the school year…lots of committed volunteers…and a pool of projects… we’re trying new things all the time…check out our blog and website…http://www.buffaloreuse.org Onward! Michael Gainer, Executive Director
Buffalo ReUse’s Executive Director Michael Gainer was awarded an Echoing Green Fellowship in 2007. Echoing Green (www.echoinggreen.org) is a national organization supporting outstanding emerging social entrepreneurs in their launch of organizations that deliver bold, high-impact solutions to society’s most challenging problems. Gainer received national recognition in the New York Times Magazine article, “Faces of Social Entrepreneurship” on March 9, 2008.
Our Vision – Buffalo ReUse will
* be a leader in the international deconstruction and re-use community, influencing public policies encouraging reuse, increasing landfill diversion and environmental protection
* forge strong alliances and collaborations to expand access to educational and training opportunities for youth 16 – 24 years old
* work with community associations and block clubs to stabilize, revitalize, and exponentially enrich the quality of life in neighborhoods
* support the incubation of new businesses related to deconstruction and reuse
Thanks Buffalo ReUse! Great startup story and it is exciting to read that your organization is helping others in a number of ways.
What nonprofit startup story will be next?
COMING SOON 2009!
Nice posting!…but i don’t have one now(nonprofit startup story)..I will keep in touch as soon as i have one.Thanks!