Grants To Create Or Develop Sports And Recreation For Young People
What Do Sponsorships Fund
Because the vast majority of sponsorships are made in exchange for marketing and/or advertising, the key to sponsorship opportunities is visibility. Thus, it makes sense to seek sponsors for public events or programs where corporate logos can be easily seen by the general public. Here are just a few of the types of projects for which sponsorship is a good match:
Performances. Whether your non-profit is a youth orchestra, a local community theatre, or a regional dance group, you can offer sponsors a spot in your program, recognition in your press releases, and mention at the start of each performance.
Exhibitions. Healthcare corporations sponsor exhibits about health. Insurance companies and banks often support art exhibitions. Toy companies support new exhibits at childrens museums. They do so in exchange for seeing their name prominently displayed on the wall and mentioned in press materials.
Sports Programs. Little League, Challenger Leagues, Pop Warner, and many other sports leagues and organizations depend upon corporate sponsors to help pay for uniforms, transportation, field upkeep, and other related costs. The sponsors spend their money because they know theyll see their logos on caps, shirts, and websites.
Balance Bar Sports Grant
The Company awards grants to enable amateur athletes and teams to pursue a sport or recreational activity that enhances physical health. Amateur athletes/enthusiasts/hobbyists who are at least 18 years old and who have not competed in athletic activities as their main source of income are eligible to apply.
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Why Are Donations Important
A strong donor program is absolutely critical to the ongoing functioning of a successful non-profit. Thats because donations provide a resource as precious and necessary as water: unrestricted funds. Unrestricted funds are available to your non-profit for its day-to-day needs, from operating programs to routine building maintenance.
And theres more. Not only are donations the single best source of unrestricted funding, they are also:
Predictable. Unlike sponsorships and grants, donations are predictable based on past years. If you ask your members, alumni, or clients for donations every November, after a few years you can make a very good guess about how much youll bring in by the end of the year. Thats very important when youre building a budget.
Likely to Grow. Good fundraisers spend time, money, and effort cultivating their donors. The donor who gave $50 last year could be a $100 donor next year with the right encouragement.
Ongoing. Grants and sponsorships relate to individual programs or projects, and are almost always time limited. When they end, they end, and so does your cash flow. Without a donor program, your non-profit runs a significant chance of simply running out of money.
Why Are Sponsorships Important
Sponsorships are the visible outcome of local collaborations between non-profits and businesses. When a company decides to sponsor your non-profit, it means that the company believes that an association with you will reflect well on them and even bring in more business. In addition:
Sponsorships Can Be Ongoing. Once youve established a positive relationship with a sponsor, theres a very good chance you can tap that same sponsor year after year. After all, if the relationship was positive last year, why wouldnt it be positive this year?
Sponsorships Help Grow Awareness. When the local sporting goods store sponsors your non-profit youth sports organization, they will make the most of their opportunity by posting information about your non-profit and its work in their store.
Sponsorships Build Good Will. When local businesses support your non-profit, the word gets around. Soon, other businesses become interested in your work, as do the individuals who work at and buy from those businesses. Not only can this result in more sponsorships, but it can also lead to increased volunteerism and participation in your non-profit work.
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Keeping Your Board Accountable With Youth Sports Grant Applications
Along with finding sponsors for your next season you should be applying for grants that you might be eligible for.
No sports program wants to struggle with finances. Having an active focus on securing grants can help you build a thriving youth sports program.
One person in your league should be responsible for researching grants, tracking due dates of applications. You may need to involve several people on your board involved in writing letters, submitting applications, and following up with decision makers.
Navigating your first grant application can be trickybut you can build on what you learn. Over time, youll build relationships with grant-making organizations. Youll know you can rely on them for funding support. And theyll know that supporting youth sports through you league furthers their charitable mission.
This is a win-win-win for your league, the grant providers, and the kids that play at your organization.
Following Up With Potential Sponsors
Great! You put yourself out there and asked a business if they have any interest in sponsoring your youth league. The only issue now is that its been two weeks and you havent heard back from them.
In these situations, it really pays to follow up. You never know what might be on their plate and touching base with them will give you a better idea of what theyre going through.
Remember you have nothing to lose. Just make sure youre very respectful about the way that you follow up.
Its possible that the business didnt have time to get back to you or they could have simply forgotten. You shouldnt take this personally and you should give them plenty of time to respond to you.
A couple of weeks is a good amount of time to give before following up. This gives the business plenty of time to think over their decision. If you dont have any luck with your initial follow-up, it might be worth following up again further down the line.
If nothing results from that follow-up, its probably time to move on. Make sure that you start asking for sponsorships well before the season starts so theres room for you to follow-up.
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Find Pro Teams That Support Youth Sports In Your Region
Almost every professional team has some sort of program to support youth sports locally. Be sure to check out the professional teams in your town to see what type of current programs they have. In most cases you need to apply for grants and sponsorships at a specific time of year, so make sure you’re researching well in advance of your season.
Learn more about a few pro teams that support youth sports below. Don’t see your team? Try Googling the name of the team and “youth sports” to see if they have a history of supporting youth sports in your area.
Dick’s Sports Matter Grants
While it doesn’t offer sports grants to individual players on your team, Dick’s Sporting Goods has a program for nonprofit sports teams in communities with financial need.
This grant program accepts a wide variety of sports such as basketball, soccer, kayaking, polo, diving, horse racing, fishing, baseball, gymnastics and table tennis. To qualify, your community needs to have a Dick’s Sporting Goods location within it, and you can only ask for up to $25,000.
You can find the link to apply on the Dick’s Sports Matter website where you’ll need to create an account through its sponsorship platform. You should hear back within 60 days, but Dick’s Sporting Goods warns you should try to apply three months in advance to allow for a high application volume.
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Grants For Nonprofit Youth Sports
Whether you run a long-time youth sports team in your community or want to get started with one, you might consider seeking youth sports grants. This extra cash can help for common expenses like uniforms, snacks and permits.
Rather than offering sports grants for individuals, organizations such as corporations and foundations usually offer grant programs that focus on nonprofit teams in specific communities, especially those where residents have a low income. You’ll need to compare multiple grant programs and their requirements so you can find the best options for your nonprofit.
Regional Or Local Grants
Some grants have a very broad focus. They aim to fund any program that supports kids.
It’s important to search locally in your area for business and nonprofits that provide grant opportunities. You may find grant programs like the AEI Heritage Fund that supports youth sports in Bartholomew County, IN.
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Sports Grants For Nonprofits
Sports grants for nonprofits are awarded for all types of sports, not just team sports such as soccer, football, and baseball. They are actually surprisingly common but also very competitive. If you are truly an outstanding sports star, you already have a huge advantage over most of the competition but if you have clear potential, it is definitely worth the extra coaching and training as soon as possible. to increase your chances of getting a prize.
For those of you who are qualified but not high school stars, smaller scholarships are also available. These wont cover your entire college education, but can ease the burden on your bank balance nonetheless.
No matter how proficient you are in a sport, the chances that you will one day make a career out of it are very low.
There is a constant risk of injuries that could end your career before it even begins, and therefore sports grants for nonprofits should not be viewed as a path to professional athletic success.
On the contrary a qualified athlete should invest in academic training only to protect against the dangers of never being successful as a professional athlete.
Scholarships provide a safety net for students and you are encouraged to study an alternative discipline as well as play your sport.
Why Are Grants Important
Grants are the tools non-profits use to start something new, pay for important equipment or training, or undertake research. Very, very few non-profits have the extra money available to, for example, outfit a laboratory, prepare staff for changing healthcare laws, or hire new staff to create an exciting, innovative, but expensive new exhibit. Grant makers are the organizations that make non-profit growth and innovation possible.
What else do grants offer? Here are just a few of their benefits:Grants Are Free Money. You dont pay back a grant, and you dont provide services in exchange for a grant. You simply do what you said you would do, write a report describing your outcomes, and youre done!
Grants Make Large Purchases Possible. How in the world can a small non-profit organization afford to purchase computers, furniture, software, and other equipment needed to start up a vocational training program? Typically, a grant is the best option.
Grants Support Risk-Taking. Its very tough to make a living as an artist, but its even harder when your art is outside of the mainstream. Grants to individual artists make it possible to spend time creating something that may not sell but may be artistically important.
Grants Enhance Your Credibility. An organization thats been funded by, say, the National Endowment for the Arts, is more likely to be taken seriously than an organization that is living on credit.
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What Are The Qualification Criteria For An Organizational Grant
To qualify for an organizational grant, your organization must be a non-profit organization, school sports program, or government-run program in a low income community that provides community-based recreational level or school sports for kids in grades K-12. We do not fund travel, elite, or AAU sports or training programs at the organizational level. You must provide proof of budget constraints, and you must operate in an area in which the local school district has a higher percentage of low income students than the state average or the average household income in the community is lower than 60% of the estimated state median income by household size based on the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program. For more information on income guidelines, please visit the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Low Income Home Energy Assistance ProgramState Median Income by Household Page or contact us at to determine if your organization qualifies. All Kids Play reserves the right to make exceptions to eligibility guidelines for reasonable extenuating circumstances.
Good Sports Equipment Grants
If your youth sports team needs a grant specifically for equipment, you can apply through Good Sports to receive donations of items such as uniforms, shoes, balls, nets and more. To qualify, your team needs to be based in a low-income area. The organization also requires that your team members be between the ages of three and 18 and that you don’t charge players a fee of more than $299.
You can apply anytime through the organization’s website and get an equipment catalog to browse if approved. You’ll have two years to place a maximum of six orders but will still need to pay for the shipping and handling on them.
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Baseball For Tomorrow Fund
The mission of the Fund, a philanthropic initiative of Major League Baseball, is to promote and enhance the growth of baseball in the United States, Canada, and worldwide. Grants may be used to finance a new program, expand or improve an existing program, undertake a new collaborative effort, or obtain facilities or equipment necessary for youth baseball or softball programs.
Companies That Give Grants & Sponsorships To Youth Athletes
Many popular youth activities, including playing video games, watching television and surfing the Internet, contribute to lifelong health issues such as Type 2 diabetes and obesity. Some companies offer grants to youth athletes, which help encourage children, teens and young adults to live healthier lifestyles and participate in sports in an effort to combat these problems, as well as promote teamwork and hard work.
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# Contact Board Members Coaches And Parents
Does anyone from your league or club work for a company that you want to seek out as a sponsor? Find out if they can request donations from their employer. In addition, companies often make matching contributions. With this approach, the employee donates and the company doubles.
Each sponsorship helps reduce costs. In fact, it can be a powerful motivator for companies wanting to sponsor youth sport. Let people know how their contribution has a direct impact on young people in the community. You can fund more athletic scholarships and control the participation fees. And it can help make sport more accessible to children and families.
Buffalo Wild Wings & The Boys & Girls Club Of America
Buffalo Wild Wings and The Boys & Girls Club of America partner to help grow flag football, basketball, soccer and volleyball at Boys & Girls Clubs across the country.
If your sports programs are affiliated with The Boys & Girls Club make sure you’re taking advantage of funding opportunities for your sports programs!
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The Ultimate Guide For Sports Sponsorship Grants
WAIT, WHAT IS A GRANT?
A grant is a sum of money given for a particular purpose. There are a variety of national grants designed specifically for youth sports purposes, such as improving sports equipment for leagues and helping children stay active in the community. There are also national grants designed for general purposes, some of which are willing to give grants towards youth sports.
WHATS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A GRANT AND SPONSORSHIP?
Think of a grant as a long term option to raise large funds and a local sponsorship as a quick way to raise smaller amounts. Also, many of the grant programs listed below will only approve 501 organizations, so if you are an individual rather than an organization, you are better off going with the local sponsorship approach.
Keep in mind that the process of applying for and receiving a grant can take a long time, so if you are looking to raise money quickly, you should check out our local sponsorship guide which can help get money from local businesses.
READY TO APPLY FOR A GRANT?
Simply click on a program to learn more!
Write A Donation Letter
How do you reach out to local organizations for sponsorship? Again, a personal approach works best. Make a list of target donors and get the names of key people from their website. Ask around the league. Find out who knows people affiliated with potential donors and work through them for an introduction.
You can also send a donation letter to request sponsorships. Make sure your letter outlines the goals of your organization and the impact that sponsorships make on the community.
Need help writing a donation letter? Check out How to Write a Donation Letter for Youth Sports.
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