Pro tips to find U.S.-based nonprofits and schools

Having trouble finding your nonprofit? If they are an eligible U.S.-based 501(c)(3) public charity or public school, they will likely be in Bright Funds’ database!* Here are a few pro tips from our team to help you find your nonprofit faster on Bright Funds. 

* If your company offers a curated list of nonprofits eligible for participation in their programs, only those approved nonprofits will be available on Bright Funds. 


Pro Tip 1: Use the EIN 

There are two ways to search for your nonprofits on Bright Funds: by name, or by their EIN (unique tax-ID number). The EIN is a nine-digit number that can help you find your nonprofit quickly! A few common places to find your nonprofit’s EIN: a donation receipt, the nonprofit’s website, Google, Charity Navigator or GuideStar.org (a database of nonprofits confirmed through the IRS database).

  1. Find the EIN

  2. Plug it into Bright Funds' search, and voila! 


Pro Tip 2: Switch it up and narrow it down

Try switching up your search terms. Searching for a few variations, as well as trying different parts of the nonprofit's name, will widen your search net and help you catch the nonprofit you want! 

When you’re searching for a specific nonprofit or branch of a nonprofit and getting way too many results, try narrowing it down by using our dropdown by state selector. 


Pro Tip 3: Make your school search a cinch

You can give tax-deductible donations directly to U.S.-based public schools. On Bright Funds' search page, you’ll see a gray toggle on the left side with options to search for Nonprofits, Schools, or Funds.

Select Public schools, and search by the school's name or their NCES School ID. Just like searching for nonprofits by EIN, searching public schools by their NCES ID can help you find them faster and more easily. 

Although you can give directly to public schools on Bright Funds, many schools also have an associated PTA, Alumni Association, or Boosters Club authorized to raise funds for them. Since these types of supporting nonprofits are considered actual nonprofits (not schools) you’ll find PTAs by searching in the Nonprofits category on Bright Funds and using their EIN. The best way to find out whether you should give directly to the school or the PTA is by contacting the school’s administrators. 

Private Schools and Colleges

Private schools and colleges are also listed under the Nonprofits category on Bright Funds.

In most cases, colleges can found under a Foundation entity in Bright Funds.

If you’re having trouble finding your school, PTA or fundraising nonprofit, click the chat button and we would be happy to help! 


Pro Tip 4: Churches and other religious nonprofits

Some religious nonprofits are eligible to receive tax-deductible donations but are not required to file taxes in the same way that other 501(c)(3) public charities are required to do.

If you have searched for your nonprofit via name and EIN (see tips above), and the entity is not appearing, the nonprofit will need to register with GuideStar as a religious entity. Doing so will make the nonprofit eligible to receive donations and matching gifts on Bright Funds. 

Please contact the nonprofit and provide them with this how-to article from GuideStar on how to get listed - the nonprofit will need to send certain documentation to GuideStar at getlisted@candid.org. GuideStar will follow up and list them in their database should the documents meet their eligibility criteria.  



Still need help? Reach out to our team using the chat bubble or

at support@brightfunds.org.

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