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What TechSoup Offers Foundations

Our donation program and resources help qualified foundations as well as their grantees

What TechSoup Offers Foundations 
Jim Lynch - October 16, 2013
TechSoup has long been a software and hardware donation resource for charities and libraries. More recently, it has begun to serve private foundations so that the entire philanthropy ecosystem can benefit from TechSoup donations, articles, and online community. Here is our roster of the resources TechSoup now has for foundations.

TechSoup Software and Hardware Donations for Foundations

TechSoup has an expanded foundation resource area for software donations. TechSoup product donations can dramatically save your foundation IT costs, which in turn allows you to stretch your IT budget, especially within a one- or three-year infrastructure planning cycle. Our foundation section lists several donations for foundations that include software from Intuit, Symantec, Adobe, Connect2Give, and Microsoft. We also offer accounting, HR, and data visualization tools that many foundations use in their day-to-day work.

In 2012, our donation program expanded with our announcement that private foundations are now eligible to receive Microsoft software donations. Since then, our offering to foundations has expanded. Foundations are now eligible for many of the same donation programs as nonprofits and libraries. You can see all of the donation programs you're eligible for by using our Eligibility Quiz.

And if you'd like to see how foundations are using our donation program, read How the James Irvine Foundation Received Microsoft Donations Through TechSoup and How Carnegie Corporation of New York Got Microsoft Donations Through TechSoup.

How TechSoup Can Be a Resource for Your Grantees

Philanthropy is very much a two-sided coin. Charities carry out mission-based work. Foundations fund and coordinate mission-based work. When the two sides of the philanthropy ecosystem are well aligned and using technology together, the result is increased impact. TechSoup can save your grantees money to put toward their mission, help them make smarter investments, and help with their grant reporting.

Here are some ways to make your grantees aware of TechSoup resources:

How to Register Your Foundation with TechSoup

As with all organizations registering at TechSoup, you must first register as an individual and then register your organization. For a thorough overview of this process, visit How to Use TechSoup or watch our free Getting Started with TechSoup webinar recording.

The organization registration form requires that you enter your annual operating budget amount, not your total assets. This is important because some donors have budget caps for eligibility. For instance, Symantec has a $10 million per year annual operating budget cap for eligibility for their donations.

As part of the organization registration process, you will be asked to choose an Organization Type and Sub-Type. For Organization Type, private foundations should select "Other Purposes and Activities" from the drop-down menu. Then choose one of the three available subtypes:

  • Private grantmaking foundation. These are nongovernmental, nonprofit organizations with funds that usually come from a single source, such as an individual, family, or corporation. An example is the Alcoa Foundation. Private grantmaking foundations have programs managed by their own trustees or directors.
  • Private independent foundation. These are private foundations that make grants based on charitable endowments. An example is the Ford Foundation. Because of their endowments, private independent foundations usually do not actively raise funds or seek public financial support.
  • Private operating foundation. These are private foundations that use the bulk of their resources to provide charitable services or run charitable programs of their own. An example is the J. Paul Getty Trust, which operates the Getty Museum in Los Angeles.

You can use this list to best match your organization's types and subtypes for TechSoup registration purposes.

After you've registered your foundation, you'll need to submit a completed Qualification Checklist (51KB PDF) and other documents to verify tax-exempt status and other information. You can send your documents three different ways:

  • Fax: (415) 633-9444
  • Email: qualification [at] techsoup.org
  • Postal mail: TechSoup Client Services, 435 Brannan Street, Suite 100, San Francisco, CA 94107

Qualification generally takes one to two weeks after document submission. You can check your organization's qualification status through your member profile. Once you're qualified, you can start to request the donated software, hardware, and services that your organization is eligible to receive.

Learning Resources for Foundations

  • You can browse subjects by Solution (such as cloud computing), Organization Type (such as foundations), and Featured Topic (such as disaster planning and recovery), all right from TechSoup.org.
  • TechSoup's Articles and How-Tos include hundreds of articles on technology topics, written for a foundation and nonprofit audience. Topics range from upgrading to the latest version of Windows to website design basics to tips for protecting your computers from viruses. These articles are written for people who are interested in technology but who are not full-time IT professionals.
  • The TechSoup blog is also written for a foundation and nonprofit audience, and it's a great source for technology news, information, and resources.
  • TechSoup offers free online webinars that can help you better understand and utilize your technology. These seminars let you learn anywhere you have a computer and Internet access. Many of the webinars are also archived, so you can view them anytime, anywhere, at your convenience.
  • Four Great Resources for Foundation Technology shares useful but not commonly known resources like the Technology Affinity Group, an online community for foundation techies, Idealware’s foundation resources like the Consumers Guide to Grants Management Software, and much more.
  • Nonprofits and Foundations: Bridging the Technology Funding Gap Together is an interesting piece about how the two sides of philanthropy (foundations