3 Things about nonprofits that I didn’t know before

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One of the main questions I always had about nonprofits was how they made money to pay for their employees, operations, etc. I feel like most people ask this question and I have learned quite a bit about the inside workings of nonprofits.

  1. There are a lot of different kinds of non profits tax wise. I had no idea going into CreateAthon how many types of nonprofits there are and how each one has different tax codes and deductions that are associated with. I learned that the most popular type is a 501c(3) which is a typical tax deductible non profit. To be honest I am still a bit fuzzy on what each tax code means, but I do know that each one dictates what benefits those who are associated with the non profit, work for the non profit, or donate to the non profit receive.
  2. I learned all the different ways that non profits fund raise and collect money as well as keep up operations. Its a difficult task, especially for brand new nonprofits. It is a lot of creative fundraising and strategic spending of money. I realize that many of the non profits at first are fundraising their own salaries, because the non profit, in its infancy, doesn’t make enough to supply operational and employee costs.
  3. The last thing I learned is just how hard it is to start and maintain a non profit. Starting a business is always hard, but it is even harder to start a business that doesn’t hold profit like a normal company. It is also hard to sell your cause, your purpose and what you are fighting for, than it is to sell a product. I have a great deal of respect for those who have successfully grown their non profit into a large company and have been able to make difference. Starting a company is like climbing a mountain, but starting, maintaining, and growing a non profit seems like climbing a mountain made of glass; it is a painful and difficult process.
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