Grant Resource Center

Morley Library has been designated as a Cooperating Collection by Candid (formerly The Foundation Center) to provide free access to print and electronic resources useful to staff, board members, volunteers, and friends of nonprofit organizations.  Through this program, our library receives printed materials as well as electronic products to assist the grant seeking library patrons in Northeast Ohio.  To ensure that the collection is available to everyone, the Library does not circulate these materials, but photocopies can be made for 10 cents per page.  Find these resources on the Third Floor.

Morley Library's Grant Resource Center provides information related to sources from which grants may be requested.  Although librarians are available to offer initial directional assistance, users do their own research.  Librarians cannot do your research for you, nor can they write or review your proposals for you.


The Grant Resource Center contains a core collection of reference materials published by Candid (formerly The Foundation Center) as well as a reference collection of in-depth materials on foundations, government agencies, philanthropy and grantsmanship skills.  The collection is found on the Third Floor, next to the Reference Desk.

Print materials in the collection include:

  • Directories of information regarding public, private, and corporate funding
  • Specialized funding sources on particular subjects or special populations
  • Reference books on grantsmanship, letter and proposal writing guides
  • Periodicals and newsletters about philanthropy

This database is licensed to be used in the Library only:

  • Foundation Directory Online - Candid is a nonprofit that helps other nonprofits serve their communities. We offer Candid's key tools including GuideStar and Foundation Directory. Our patrons can access GuideStar to research local nonprofits to support and to find services. Nonprofits and individuals seeking funding, scholarships, or fellowships can access Foundation Directory to find and connect with funders.

Morley Library's circulating collection also contains numerous titles about grants. 


For Nonprofits:

BoardSource increases the effectiveness of nonprofit organizations by strengthening boards of directors.

The Chronicle of Philanthropy Online version of "The Newspaper of the Nonprofit World." 

Council Online
Created by the Council on Foundations in Washington D.C., this site gives links to grantmakers, non-profits, and other resources. It also has links to key legislation. One-stop resource for information on competitive federal government grants. Includes 900+ programs from 26 grant-making agencies.

National database of non-profit organizations. Includes information about the operations and finances of non-profit organizations, including image files of Form 990 filings. Requires free registration to use.

This site compiles resources available on the Internet and arranges them by topic and geographic location. The non-profit directory can be searched by keyword. The site also includes tools for non-profits and links to appropriate tax forms (Adobe Acrobat required for the tax forms).

Internal Revenue Service Use this link for information on achieving 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status for your nonprofit organization.

Kent State University's What to Do Before You Write a Grant Proposal

The NonProfit Times:
The Leading Business Publication For Nonprofit Management

This site publishes a few lead articles from each print issue and lists the titles and authors of the other articles in the issue. Free subscriptions are offered to full time U.S. nonprofit executives. 

Ohio Association of Nonprofit Organizations

A statewide organization dedicated to strengthening the effectiveness of the charitable nonprofit sector in Ohio.

Ohio Humanities Council 
The Ohio Humanities Council provides assistance to grant applicants by overseeing programs that promote the humanities in Ohio through collaborations with cultural and educational institutions.

Ohio Secretary of State

Use this link for information on incorporating as a nonprofit in the State of Ohio.

The Philanthropy Roundtable

This publication and organization is geared to those who give money rather than those who seek it.


For Individuals:

Most foundation grants go to nonprofit organizations, not to individuals.

Books by Matthew Lesko, Lauri Blum and others oversimplify information and mislead the public.  Most of the "grants" discussed in these books and in related infomercials, are actually entitlement programs, like Medicare and Social Security (please read this article from AARP, and advice from Candid).  Because most foundation funding is awarded to nonprofit organizations, the individual grantseeker should expect to encounter stiff competition for grant dollars. In addition, most grantmakers place highly specific limitations on their giving to individuals.  However, the following book and web sites might provide useful information.

Foundation Directory detailed information on more than 10,000 foundations that give grants, fellowships or scholarships to individuals. is your gateway to government loan information. It directs you to the loan information that best meets your needs.

United Way 2-1-1
2-1-1 can offer access to the following types of services:
Basic Human Needs Resource: food banks, clothing closets, shelters, rent assistance, utility assistance.

Physical and Mental Health Resources: health insurance programs, Medicaid and Medicare, maternal health,  Children's Health Insurance Program, medical information lines, crisis intervention services, support groups, counseling, drug and alcohol intervention and rehabilitation. 

Employment Supports: financial assistance, job training, transportation assistance, education programs.

National Council on Aging 
The National Council on Aging's BenefitsCheckUp helps people connect to private or government programs that help them pay for prescription drugs, health care, utilities, and other needs.

Michigan State University Libraries’ Grants for Individuals 
This list focuses on grants and awards for education and scholarship.

HUD lower interest mortgages
While HUD does not offer direct grants or loans to individuals, they do work through local governments and non-profit organizations to make financial assistance and counseling available.  This website provides links to local entities that offer assistance. (By and large, private foundations do NOT make grants to individuals for the purchase of a home. )

Lake County Lifeline
Lake County’s Community Action Agency, helping families break the cycle of poverty and achieve self-sufficiency.


For Small Business:

By and large, foundations do not make grants to for-profit enterprises.

The U.S. Small Business Administration does not offer grants to start or expand small businesses, although it does offer a wide variety of loan programs. (See for more information)  While the SBA does offer some grant programs, these are generally designed to expand and enhance organizations that provide small business management, technical, or financial assistance. These grants generally support non-profit organizations, intermediary lending institutions, and state and local governments.  Most funding for small business is in the form of loans or tax incentives.

A legitimate federal grant program for small businesses is the SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research Program) for small high tech businesses. This is a competitive grant offered by many federal departments. For more information, see:

For more information on the SBA programs, see their website at:

My Own Business Institute: A Free Internet Course on Starting a Business is a 12-session course that is intended for both start-up and already operating businesses. The site is fully interactive with audio sound bytes, quizzes, feedback, and a tool to create your own business plan.



State of Ohio Business Gateway

State of Ohio Small Business Development Center