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How to Start a Nonprofit Organization for At-Risk Youth

A nonprofit organization is a business entity, trust or informal group serving a specific community need. Many inner-city kids are at-risk of dropping out of school or getting into trouble with the law. According to CNN, of the nearly 6.2 million students who drop out, most are Latino or black. There are many ways for a nonprofit organization to help inner city kids stay on track. Starting an organization is the simple part; making a significant difference takes considerable effort.


Difficulty: 3

Step 1

Create the mission of the nonprofit organization. The mission states the group of kids being helped, how the kids are identified and what methods of help will be presented to them.

Step 2

Elect a board of directors that will govern now the nonprofit runs. The same person can fulfill more than one board position, but the president should be different from the secretary if you have more than one board member.

Step 3

Open a new corporation with the secretary of state in the state the nonprofit is in. Go to the secretary of state website and file articles of incorporation, initial board members and bylaws. Templates for articles of incorporation and bylaws are found at the secretary of state website.

Step 4

Conduct a board meeting to create and approve an annual budget. The budget includes fundraising efforts and service project expenditures.

Step 5

Apply for an Employer Identification Number through the Internal Revenue Service website. An EIN can be obtained online or via the phone application at 800-829-4933.

Step 6

Use the EIN, your articles of incorporation, budget, bylaws and mission to apply for tax exemption. Download IRS Form 1023, Application for Recognition of Exemption at Complete the form and submit it with all requested documentation.

Step 7

Call the state department of revenue and ask whether there are state registration requirements for state tax exemption. Every state is different.


Tips & Warnings

  • Many state attorney general's office issues permits for raffles and other types of fundraisers. The police department issues solicitation cards authorizing you to go door-to-door to solicit donations.

Article Written By Kay Miranda

In 2001, Kay Miranda had her second screenplay purchased, then started writing a weekly column in "The Messenger," with work appearing in "Xquisite" and "Valley Scene Magazine." Miranda earned a Bachelor of Arts in bio-psychology from the University of Colorado. Fortunate to play collegiate tennis, Miranda has extensive travel and coaching experience.