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Nonprofit Resources

Research grants and learn skills to build the capacity of your nonprofit.

Bellingham Public Library is a member of Candid’s Funding Information Network. Candid is the organization  formed from the merger of the Foundation Center and Guidestar, and is dedicated to collecting, organizing, and disseminating information that connects nonprofits and grantmakers.

Note: Candid is now offering a limited version of the Foundation Directory Online available from home, the Foundation Directory Online Essential. You can search for grantmakers using this version of FDO, but cannot access recipient profiles or awarded grants.


Available only at the Central Library; access is not available from home.

Candid resources are provided by a generous grant from the Whatcom Community Foundation. Come to the Central Library to use these resources, then download or email information as needed:

Foundation Directory Online: Professional connects you with funding opportunities to make a real difference. Search for grantmakers who fund in your areas of interest, for the population you serve, in your geographic region, providing the type of support you need.

Foundation Grants to Individuals allows you to find funders that provide scholarships, fellowships, and more.

Foundation Maps: Professional shows you who’s funding what, and where, around the world.

Other Candid resources available remotely

  • Candid ebooks
    Set up a free account to access ebooks from Candid. They require name, phone, and email. Read titles on advocacy and activism, fundraising, grantseeking, proposal writing, starting and running a nonprofit, and social entrepreneurship.
  • Candid Learning
    Candid Learning is your destination for all of Candid’s live and on-demand rainings, webinars, and other resources designed to improve your fundraising, overall sustainability, grantmaking, and transparency. Many of these resources are free.
  • IssueLab by Candid
    If you need background information for your proposal, IssueLab is a good source of current research on the social needs that your nonprofit is addressing. You can search any of 38 issue areas and get an overview of research related to that subject.
  • Philanthropy Classification System – Candid
    When you search the Foundation Directory Online, Candid translates your natural language search into their authorized search terms. These terms, with their definitions, make up the Philanthropy Classification System. You can get a head start on your FDO search by using this resource to find your most optimal terms.

Classes suspended until further notice.

Please contact Deborah Brewer at 360-778-7210 or dbrewer@cob.org for help with the Foundation Directory Essential database.

Brief, helpful videos are available through the Foundation Center YouTube Channel and demonstrate how to use Foundation Directory Online.

Our collection contains books and other materials on these subject areas:

Download the library’s Nonprofit Resource Center brochure (PDF).

Chuckanut Health Foundation

The Foundation invests in health-related programs, projects, and health education activities. Access their website for application details for grants and scholarships. Check out their many community partners, including the key role they play in the Aging Well Whatcom Coalition.

United Way of Whatcom County

United Way’s focus is financial stability for all members of the community.  They fund a network of non-profits across Whatcom County so people can move along the path from meeting basic needs, to economic motility, to breaking the cycle of poverty. Access their projects and partners, events, and links to their e-newsletters on their website.

Volunteer Center of Whatcom County

The Center provides a means for volunteers, nonprofits, schools, government, and health care organizations to come together to solve community challenges. In addition, the Center helps nonprofits expand their capacity to recruit and manage volunteers successfully so agencies can focus on providing vital services. The Center is a program of the Opportunity Council.

Whatcom Community Foundation

The Foundation is a public charitable organization created to enrich the quality of life for all residents of Whatcom County. The Foundation is both a grantmaker and a vehicle for donors to accomplish their philanthropic dreams. The Foundation funds the Whatcom Nonprofit Network, access to the Foundation Directory Online at the Bellingham Public Library, and offers workshops and trainings throughout the year. Access their blog, grant applications, ‘Nonprofit Toolkit’, and their newsletter on their website.

Whatcom Nonprofit Network

A local networking hub and education resource that strengthens the local philanthropy sector. Sign up for the network newsletter, which includes event information, job openings, and other resources. Use the Nonprofit Toolkit to access a wide variety of regional and national resources, and check out the comprehensive list of Whatcom PR contacts.

501 Commons
The Commons boosts the capacity of nonprofit organization to thrive over the long term and effectively serve their communities.

AFP Advancement Northwest
Association of Fundraising Professionals Advancement Northwest: The Resources section of this site has links to information that will help you stay current on fundraising news and trends, as well as listing regional and national nonprofit resources.

Communities Rise
Communities Rise fosters movements to build power in communities impacted by systemic oppression. It pursues cross-sector collaboration and provide capacity-building and legal services for community organizations and microenterprises.

Department of Revenue: Nonprofit organizations
Information for nonprofits on how to register with the Department, pay their taxes, fundraising guidelines, and tax exemptions.

Secretary of State: Charities
Information about charities, charitable trusts, and charitable solicitations in Washington State.

Washington Nonprofits
Collaborative network of nonprofits serving Washington State through advocacy, research, education, and capacity building.

Washington Service Corps
The Corps is part of the federal AmeriCorps program, and places members individually or in small groups or teams in organizations across the state.

Federal Assistance (formerly Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance)
Detailed program descriptions for federal assistance programs. Nonprofits qualify for a selection of these programs.

Grants.gov
U.S. government grants, loans, and other resources for nonprofits. The website is divided in teaching about how to apply for grants from the federal government, and the actual application process.

IRS Charities and Non-Profits
The IRS provides a wide variety of information helpful to all registered nonprofits, including forms and publications.