Hello 8yi -
Welcome! There are a number of avenues you can take to find funding
for your art organization. I've included a number of suggestions
below, along with associated information you can use to pursue them.
If you need any additional information, please don't hesitate to ask
before rating this answer. Thank you.
FIND A GRANT
One of the more popular ways of seeking funding for a nonprofit such
as yours is through the pursuit of grants from foundations,
individuals, or companies.
A great destination for finding such resources is the Foundation
Center, located at http://www.foundationcenter.org. The Foundation
Center has a fee-based service that will enable you to browse their
directory of givers: it's called The Foundation Directory, located
here: http://fconline.fdncenter.org/. For a nominal cost, you can
gain access to hundreds or thousands of potential resources that are
active in funding nonprofits.
While this is the most cost effective solution, it will require your
organization to do a lot of the footwork yourselves in the area of
grant writing. There are many books on the topic. Here's a page that
lists several and talks more about it:
You might elect to hire an outside grant writer for the task of
writing your grants. The Association of Fundraising Professionals
houses a database of grant writing professionals, located here:
One way to find funding is to hire an individual or company that
specializes in the area of professional fundraising. They will launch
a campaign in one or more areas to seek funding for your organization.
I spoke to Mr. Steve Hitchcock from a firm named Mal Warwick, a
company specializing in fundraising support:
Steve recommends two companies that have extensive experience in
fundraising for artistic organizations -- DSD and Mart and Lundy:
Marts and Lundy
1200 Wall Street West
Lyndhurst, NJ 07071
Within the US: 1-800-526-9005
Outside the US: (201) 460-1660
1100 Larkspur Landing Circle, Suite 280
Larkspur, CA 94939
It may be wise to carry out a feasibility study to find out the true
potential of your organization and its fundraising endeavors. This
link at the Association of Fundraising Professionals lists companies
that specialize in performing feasibility studies:
DONATIONS FROM INDIVIDUALS
Depending on the reach of your organization socially, you might want
to consider a membership-based model for ongoing funding. Membership
could offer various rewards and kickbacks such as a mentioning in your
(potential) newsletter, a reward plack, access to privileged sections
of your organization, etc. Nonprofit churches and synagogues are
often funded using a member-driven model.
Periodic direct mailings to your members to solicit funds would be a
good way to seek ongoing financial support for your organization.
Looks to be an exhaustive source for information on the topic:
Another huge resource at about.com:
Select search strategy
fundraising "our services"