Fiscal Sponsorship

What is fiscal sponsorship?

An existing nonprofit offers its services, support, and tax exempt status to a person, community group, or collaborative that wants to create a new program, build community movement, launch an initiative or otherwise affect change for the common good. It’s a mechanism to support people and organizations in creating new projects without the need to create new nonprofits. Nonprofits are able to act as fiscal sponsors for projects that share a similar mission and purpose. Fiscal sponsors can offer a variety of services, from receipt of grants and charitable donations to technical assistance with project development.

Fiscal sponsors are legally and financially responsible for the projects they support. It’s important for there to be a contract between the project and the sponsor, outlining each party’s commitments and responsibilities. There is often a fee associated with fiscal sponsorship, which should also be documented in the contract.

Local organizations with fiscal sponsorship programs:

  • The Ink People’s DreamMaker Program- self-directing projects created by people who have a dream of making the community a better place through art. The Ink People offers administrative support and technical assistance to community projects “adopted” into their nonprofit family.
  • Trees Foundation - support for community-based conservation and restoration projects

Learn more about how to make a fiscal sponsorship work for you:

Alder and Covin

A San Francisco based law firm dedicated to serving nonprofits. They have many years of experience fostering fiscal sponsorship relationships and agreements, and wrote the book, Fiscal Sponsorship: 6 Ways to Do It Right, which is available to check out free of charge in HAF's Nonprofit Resource Center library.

Fiscal Sponsorship Directory

A searchable database of fiscal sponsor organizations across the country. is a great resource for information on fiscal sponsorship, including overviews on what makes a successful partnership and sample policies.


A San Francisco based organization that provides a comprehensive range of fiscal sponsorship services


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