You’re ready to start your non-profit organization and that’s great! It’s important to give back and support good causes and there’s no better time to get started. Keep in mind that there are several different types of non-profit organizations, and you want to be certain you’re picking the right one to fit your organization’s needs. Check out this list before you begin.
A charitable organization 501(c)(3) is probably what you think of when you think non-profit. They are tax-exempt in the United States and make up more than 1.5 million charities across the country. They often include organizations in the fields of science, literacy, education, and animal rights.
The 501(c)(4) shares a lot of similarities with charitable organizations, but they have more leeway and opportunity when it comes to getting involved with political issues. They often represent disenfranchised groups or employees, mostly through raising money and non-legal support.
While advocacy organizations also fall under the 501(c)(4) distinction, their focus is far more on lobbying and legal change. This type of group often goes in front of local and state governments for legal protection, restitutions, and more. They also fundraise and use grassroots campaigns to support their base and their causes, but their biggest effect is felt in the government.
Recreational groups are part of myriad organizations, so you’ll want to do your research and make sure that the 501(c)(7) designation truly fits your group. This might include activities, sports, hobbies, or even programs designed for socializing.
Charitable foundations are most often created by wealthy individuals looking to address broader issues in a comprehensive way. Unlike many other non-profit structures, charitable foundations fundraise from benefactors, instead of through grassroots methods, and will then spread the wealth to combat issues like climate change, global health, and literacy.
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