3 Important Tips When Starting Your Own Youth-Inspired Foundation

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The Gray Foundation, started by Jonathan Gray and Mindy Gray, was established to increase access to education and opportunity to low-income youth. If you're looking to benefit your community in the same way, consider these tips when starting a foundation. 

Make a Full-Time Commitment  

Truthfully, a lot of work goes into creating a successful foundation. As such, you need to make a full commitment from the very start. Without having the foundation as your number one priority, you may start losing passion. Then getting up each morning and making an impact on low-income youth will become much more difficult. 

In order to make a full-time commitment, you need to sort out your finances first. It's a lot easier to fully commit when you're well off, but there are other ways too. You could, for example, gather the right fundraising and sponsors to sustain your foundation over the years.

Establish By-Laws 

The only way your foundation for low-income youth is going to work out is if you establish a clear set of by-laws. They essentially govern the foundation and the people who work for it. Without these laws, your foundation may become mismanaged and a lot of legal issues could arise.

First and foremost, you need to designate how board members are appointed. So if one member leaves or passes away, you have a judicious appointment process to ensure parties are treated fairly. You also need to identify how issues will be resolved if board members don't all agree. 

Apply for Tax-Exempt Status 

One of the great things about starting your own foundation is it can be exempt from taxes, as long as you submit the right applications and are approved. In these applications, you'll have to provide some basic information. You'll be asked about your foundation's primary activities, how your board of directories are composed, and how your foundation is organized.

It's important to make sure these forms are filled out correctly and submitted before the specified deadlines. To help you achieve a tax-exempt status, you can hire a trusted attorney. They'll walk you through this entire process to ensure it's completed without any unnecessary delays. 

If you're looking to make a difference in your community, starting a foundation may be a viable option. It's not going to be easy, but if you take the right steps early on, your foundation can thrive for many years and grant youth access to all sorts of helpful resources.