FIND FREE STUFF
In response to requests from FASTEN users, The FASTEN team has gathered information about free and low-cost items that faith-based nonprofits may be able to access through a variety of organizations and associations. We have listed, first, a number of national clearinghouses that FBOs can join for free or for a modest registration fee. Typically these clearinghouses offer nonprofits an opportunity to either post their wish lists on-line for responses by donors/donor matching services or to browse through a catalog of donated items that is updated on a regular basis. Next, we list a number of organizations offering free or discounted computer and computer-related equipment and services to nonprofits. Finally, you will find information on how to connect individuals in need of business/professional clothing with free clothing resources.
Find Free Stuff
The FASTEN team has gathered information about free and low-cost items that faith-based nonprofits may be able to access through a variety of organizations and associations.
National Clearinghouses for Various Types of Donated Goods
1. Gifts in Kind (www.giftsinkind.org)
Gifts in Kind America is an organization for 501(c)(3) nonprofits. Donor organizations (e.g., companies) may donate office equipment and supplies including software, hardware, building materials, furniture, clothing, toys, medical equipment and supplies, personal care products and more. Gifts in Kind is the largest recipient of such donations, reporting $200 million worth of products distributed per year. To receive items through Gifts in Kind, nonprofits need to register with the agency. Registration is based on a sliding fee scale, starting at $125 for nonprofits with an annual budget less than $1 million.
2. NAEIR (www.naeir.org)
The National Association for the Exchange of Industrial Resources (NAEIR) is a not-for-profit collector and distributor of new, donated overstock inventory from U.S. corporations to schools and nonprofit organizations. It offers a fair, equitable way for these goods to be distributed to qualified recipient groups, using a highly sophisticated computerized allocation system, designed specifically for this purpose. Members of NAEIR pay $99 for a shipment of goods that the member selects from a catalog produced by NAEIR that is regularly updated.
3. ExcessAccess (www.excessaccess.com)
ExcessAccess is an Internet database service matching donors and recipients that are in the same geographical area. It links specific companiesf donations with nearby nonprofits looking for such items. At times, donors have volunteered to drop-off or ship very small items to the nonprofit, but this is at the donorfs discretion. Nonprofits with a gwish listh pay an upfront, flat, $3 registration fee that gives them a 6-month subscription to the service. Nonprofits can update or edit their wish lists at any time. The most frequently donated items are office or home furniture, supplies, electronic equipment, and appliances. This service also receives donations of building supplies, medical supplies, seasonal items such as decorations, food, toys, and clothing.
4. InKindIndex (www.inkindex.com)
This is an online resource that facilitates the donation of excess inventory by business firms to nonprofit organizations. Nonprofits gain access to a broad, efficient network of corporations for product donations. Basic membership in the program is free; gpremiumh membership (which permits access to additional special services) is $195 annually.
5. Throw Place Ltd. (www.throwplace.com)
Throwplace.com is an online market where individuals, charities, nonprofits and businesses can exchange excess goods and surplus inventory free of charge. Nonprofits register on the site for free, then can browse donated items and their location. Nonprofits can take up to 5 items per month from the inventory for free; beyond five items, there is a $5 per item charge.
Computers and Technology
1. TechMission (www.techmission.org)
TechMission is a Christian non-profit organization aimed that works to aid Christian organizations by using technology to transform at-risk communities.
TechMission offers a wide variety of services and programs, often with little to no cost. A few services are highlighted below:
2. TechSoup Stock (www.techsoup.org/DiscounTech)
Faith-based nonprofits can register for free for TechSoup Stock and then be eligible for purchasing, at significantly discounted prices, donated software and other technology products that leading tech firms such as Microsoft make available to TechSoup.
3. National Cristina Foundation (www.cristina.org)
National Cristina Foundation (NCF) accepts applications for free equipment from nonprofit organizations that are engaged in the education, rehabilitation, or training of people with disabilities, at-risk students, or economically disadvantaged persons.
4. Compumentor (www.compumentor.org)
Compumentor is a nonprofit organization specializing in technology assistance for community-based organizations and schools. Through its consulting practice, Compumentor offers technology planning, implementation, and support services. Compumentor is also the home of TechSoup.org, the technology website for the nonprofit sector.
1. Dress for Success
Dress for Success provides interview suits, confidence boosts, and career development to more than 45,000 women in over 75 cities each year. Dress for Success is a not-for-profit organization that helps low-income women make tailored transitions into the workforce. Each Dress for Success client receives one suit when she has a job interview and a second suit when she gets the job. The Dress for Success Professional Womenfs Group program then provides ongoing support to help the client build a successful career. Women are referred to Dress for Success by a continually expanding array of not-for-profit and government agencies including homeless shelters, domestic violence shelters, immigration services, and job training programs.
2. Career Gear
Career Gear is a nonprofit organization that fills the gap between job-training programs and employment by providing men with interview clothing, motivation, and follow-up support that helps them get and keep jobs. Currently, Career Gear is active in four cities: New York, Cleveland, Miami, and Houston. A variety of job-training programs and government agencies refer men to Career Gear. Each man receives one suit when he has an interview and a second suit when he gets a job. Staff members and trained volunteers help coach each Career Gear client on his upcoming interview. Each man leaves ready to meet prospective employers, not only looking his best, but also radiating the self-confidence needed to get the job.
1. Free Conference Calling (www.freeconference.com/ConferenceCall.aspx)
Web-Scheduled Standard provides free, high-quality conference calling you can schedule and manage from any Web browser. The service allows up to 100 callers, and calls may last for up to 3 hours. Your callers may be charged long-distance fees by their phone service providers, if the access number for the call is long distance for them, but Web-Scheduled Standard provides their services completely free of charge.
2. Free Credit Report (www.annualcreditreport.com
AnnualCreditReport.com allows any user to request a free credit report once every 12 months. The website is easy to navigate and protected against security risks. Check out the websitefs FAQs page if you have questions regarding the process.
3. Free Tools on Insurance (Good for Adult Life Skills/Financial Literacy Programs) (www.thebeehive.org
The Beehive, a project of the One Economy Corporation, is an easy-to-navigate and easy-to-read information resource on a wide variety of topics crucial to our everyday life. The About Insurance page provides a great introduction to auto, home, and life insurance, perfect for a financial literacy or life skills class. Users can easily find out how to choose insurance, what all the lingo means, how to save money, what to do when an accident or disaster occurs, and many more basic insurance tips.
4. Free On-line Homework Help
Also on the Beehive is a homework help section, including sections for kids in elementary, middle, and high school and a section for parents. The student pages include links to all sorts of age-appropriate resources for kids to get help with spelling, vocabulary, math, social studies, the arts, and more. The pages are easy-to-navigate and fun for kids to explore. Parents can also get plenty of help on how best to help kids with their homework, including creating a good space for homework, how to encourage their kids to read, and where to get free online resources on all the subjects their kids are studying.
5. Free IT Training Program for NYC Residents (www.npowerny.org/education/tsc/index.htm
The Technology Service Corps is a 3 month training program for young adults who wish to enter the nonprofit world in New York City. Participants spend 8 weeks in training, gaining the specialized skills and knowledge necessary to do IT work for both large and small nonprofits, as well as basic job-readiness skills such as problem solving, customer service, and communication skills.
After the classroom training is completed, students have a 4 week internship at a NYC nonprofit so they can use their new skills under supervision.
Participants must be 18-25 years old, live in New York City
, and have both work experience and a high school diploma or GED. The training is free with the understanding that graduates will take their training to the cityfs nonprofit world upon graduation.
1. Artists Helping Children (www.artisthelpingchildren.org)
The Artists Helping Children Foundation seeks to enhance the quality of life for sick, abused, or neglected children. These children, burdened by circumstances outside their control, often live in the most sterile and uninviting environments. By painting murals and creating other art for and with the children, the Foundation creates an enriching and happy atmosphere to encourage youthfs emotional and physical healing and well-being. The Foundation provides free murals, artwork, art supplies, arts and crafts materials, and toys to sick and needy children. Nonprofits working with ill and/or abused children can post their needs in the Artist Helping Children Foundationfs Project Management System and add their information in one or more categories, depending on what the nonprofit is interested in.
2. Donate Real Estate (www.donaterealestate.com)
This group offers nonprofit organizations that have received real estate contributions to process those gifts. They assist many nationally renowned charities in facilitating the generous land/property gifts that they are offered. These charitable foundations have been able to accept more donations and thus generate more revenue by allowing Donate Real Estate to handle the real estate contributions they receive instead of processing those donations in-house.