Fundraising, Management Issues/fundraising


My daughter and her friends have started a cheer team where they will compete a few times a year. We would like to do fundraising to cover some of the costs but we are not a non-profit organization and we are a new organization and have no money to become a non-profit at this time. Can we do fundraising without becoming non-profit?

Hi Doreen,

Thanks for your question. Yes, you can do fundraising without becoming a non-profit, but donors' gifts will not be tax-deductible for them. If that is important to you and/or them, you *can* become a fiscally-sponsored organization of a non-profit. Your fiscal sponsor will accept donations on your behalf, which will be tax-deductible, and they will pass the funds on to you. Organizations that do this will take a fee usually 5-10% of the donation. You can contact your local community foundation to find out if they do this. If they do not, they should be able to refer you to an organization that does.

Good luck!

Fundraising, Management Issues

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Barbara Bellissimo


I have over ten years experience in fundraising, and have helped organizations raise millions of dollars. My passion is to help small organizations tackle the big job of setting up and maintaining a fundraising and development structure that gets big results. Having lived and worked on the island of Martha's Vineyard, I have a unique perspective on those organizations facing the special challenges of fundraising in a seasonal community. I can answer questions about annual campaigns, major donors, institutional fundraising, development planning, strategic planning and board training.


I have raised over $25M from individuals, foundations and corporations, in all types of economic environments. I have worked as a consultant, a part-time employee and a full-time employee in nonprofit fundraising.

Association for Fundraising Professionals, Golden Gate Chapter.

"10 Biggest Fears Professional Women Have Around Asking For Money...And How To Conquer Them", e-book, self-published, January 2010. "The Five Most Important Questions to Answer in Your Case Statement", e-book, self-published, March 2006. "Become Your Own Great and Powerful: A Woman's Guide to Leading Your Real, Big Life", iUniverse, Inc., April 2005. iUniverse Editor's Choice and Amazon Bestseller.

BS in Economics from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Graduate coursework in Counseling Psychology at Capella University. The Fund Raising School, The Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University: Principles of Fundraising, Creating an Effective Planned Giving Program, Developing Major Gifts.

Past/Present Clients
Homestretch Internship Program Junior League of San Francisco Leadership Midpeninsula Palo Alto Community Fund People Acting in Community Together African American Heritage Trail AIDS Alliance of Martha's Vineyard Bridge Housing The Drum Workshop FARM Institute Habitat for Humanity of Martha's Vineyard Hospice of Martha's Vineyard Island Affordable Housing Fund Island Children's School Martha's Vineyard Donors Collaborative Martha's Vineyard Chamber Music Society Martha's Vineyard Commission Nathan Mayhew Seminars Polly Hill Arboretum Vineyard House Vineyard Nursing Association Vineyard Playhouse West Tisbury Public Library Women Empowered The Yard YMCA of Martha's Vineyard

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