How to find funding opportunities

March 7, 2019 Tags: , , , , , ,

Birmingham Community Matters has been working with the expert team at Get Grants ( to hold workshops on fundraising for small community organisations.

The half-day workshops are packed with information on bid writing. After our last session, delivered at Stirchley Baths by John Ellery, attendees said things like:

‘Excellent delivery, well timed and very clear’


‘Thank you. Very informative and well presented’.

One area which the Get Grants team explores during the workshops is finding fundraising opportunities. Before you even start the application process, how do you create a list of organisations to approach?

Here are four tips from John:

1. Make use of a grant funding search engine
There are several websites that provide useful databases of grant funders. Get Grants recommends using Funding Central (

‘This is easily the quickest way to get yourself a good list of potential funders,’ said John, pointing to the grants section of the website.

2. Sign up for Get Grants’ newsletter
Sent monthly and received by thousands of fundraisers, Get Grants’ e-newsletter contains details of grant programmes, important deadlines, and advice on how to be successful when applying for grants. They’re so useful, John said he even keeps them on file and uses them as a searchable database when seeking specific funding for clients.

You can see previous editions of the newsletter and sign up for future mailings at

3. Find funders who have supported similar organisations
A great tip for finding potential funders is to visit the websites of organisations similar to your own and see who they have thanked.

‘Most organisations will have a thank you section or our supporters-type page,’ said John. ‘Here you’ll find lists of organisations that you immediately know have an interest in supporting causes like yours. Often you will find small trust funds or benefactors that aren’t big enough to have their own websites. It’s always worth sending them a letter’.

4. Look at registered charities’ accounts
Following on from the last point, take a look at the public listings on the Charity Commission’s register for charities that support causes similar to yours. Their annual accounts will often list the organisations that have funded them, which provides another useful starting point for deciding where to focus your applications.

To benefit further from Get Grants’ expertise, sign up for our next Introduction to Fundraising workshop in Moseley on Wednesday 3 April. We have made it free for you to attend, but please book soon as places are going fast.

See details of more bid-writing training sessions from Get Grants.