Funding you receive from private foundations and trusts.

  • In Texas, there are two professionally run private foundations, which means the grant officers are professionals within the world of philanthropy. All other private foundations and trusts in Texas are family operated, which means the decision-making process takes place within a family structure. In part because of the personal dynamics, you cannot depend on receiving support on a year-to-year basis.
  • Because most foundations are family affairs, it is usually important to have a family member\’s ear and support. Sending unsolicited proposals to foundations is usually an effort in futility and disappointment. This is one of the places your board can help you. Their connections with foundation board members can provide you with entrée to the foundation. You will need to maintain and advance that association, as your board member will move on.
  • The best way to research foundations is through a Foundation Library. These are libraries or collections within libraries that have reference book and materials on private foundations and trusts. These are very expensive resources that expire each year, so most non-profits only have none or one. These libraries have many of them. Some require you make an appointment in advance. If it is your first time, make an appointment with the librarian so they can show you how the resources work. Bring a list of what you are seeking funding for, including subject areas (arts, education, deaf audiences) by type of funding (building fund, program support, endowment). Also bring a list of your board members, their spouses, and any other well-connected individuals who support your organization. 
    see Template Checklist for Research
  • Find the foundation library closest to you from the complete list below:
    Amarillo Area Foundation
    Arlington Public Library
    Burleson Public Library
    Center for Nonprofit Management, Fort Worth
    Dallas Public Library
    Houston Public Library
    Longview Public Library
    Lubbock Area Foundation
    Nonprofit Management Center of Wichita Falls
    Regional Foundation Library, Austin
    San Antonio Area Foundation
    Southeast Texas Nonprofit Development Center, Beaumont
    Southwest Border Nonprofit Resource Center, Edinburg
    Temple Public Library
    Texas A&M International University, Laredo
    Texas A&M University – Kingsville
    Tom Green County Public Library, San Angelo
    United Way of Greater Houston
    United Way of Tyler/Smith County, Tyler
    University of North Texas, Denton
    University of Texas at El Paso
    Victoria College/University of Houston at Victoria
    Waco-McLennan County Library, Waco