Frequently Asked Questions
Subscriptions and Billing
- How are monthly plans billed?
- How are annual and two-year plans billed?
- Can I pay for my subscription by check?
- How secure is my credit card information?
- Are you going to sell or distribute my personal information?
- Do you offer Enterprise (institution-wide) site licenses or access across a public library branch system?
- How does a multi-user subscription work?
- Can I share my password with others in my office?
- Can I access my single-user subscription on more than one computer? For example, at home and at work?
Foundation Directory Online Content and Features
- What are the differences in content among Foundation Directory Online Essential and Professional?
- What information will I typically find in a grantmaker record?
- What information will I typically find in a grant record?
- Where does Foundation Directory Online get its data?
- How frequently is data updated in Foundation Directory Online?
- How quickly are profiles for new foundations added to Foundation Directory Online?
- Is corporate giving information included?
- Is Foundation Directory Online useful to international grantseekers?
- Are grants to individuals included?
- What is Search 990s and what can I do with it?
- What type of support is available for Foundation Directory Online subscribers?
Subscriptions and Billing
Monthly plans are automatically billed by Foundation Center each month on the anniversary of your start date. You can cancel your subscription at any time by contacting Customer Support. However, please note that subscription fees are non-refundable and there is no proration of your subscription charge if you cancel your subscription before the end of your subscription period. Your account will remain active until the end of your subscription period.
Annual plans are automatically billed by Foundation Center each year if you chose an annual subscription—or every other year if you chose a two-year subscription—on the anniversary of your start date. You can cancel your subscription at any time by contacting Customer Support. However, please note that subscription fees are non-refundable and there is no proration of your subscription charge if you cancel your subscription before the end of your subscription period. Your account will remain active until the end of your subscription period.
Annual and two-year subscribers can choose to pay by check during the online subscription process. Complete the required fields on the online form, check the "I would prefer to pay by check" check box, and complete the subscription process. You will receive an e-mail with payment instructions. When we receive your initial payment by check, you will receive a confirmation e-mail to let you know that your account has been activated.
Foundation Center encrypts all personal information you give us when you place an order online. Providing encrypted information online is as safe as giving it to someone over the phone. See our Security Statement for more information.
Yes, an Enterprise option, based on IP authentication for unlimited access, is available for the top tier Foundation Directory Online Professional service. Pricing is based on your organization’s type and size; visit Enterprise Solutions to learn more and request a quote.
A pre-selected number of authorized users can access Foundation Directory Online. We offer a variety of multi-user plans for up to 10 users at each subscription level. For larger organizations, we recommend an Enterprise plan (Professional only), which allows your designated community of users to log in, no username or password required. An Enterprise plan also offers public library systems on-site access to FDO Professional to multiple branches under one subscription. For details, visit Enterprise Solutions to learn more and request a quote.
Your password belongs only to you and should be kept confidential. Subscribers under a multi-user plan may disclose their password only to the number of authorized additional users paid for under their plan. They may also invite those authorized users to create logins in the User Management area of the Account area. Please read the Subscriber Agreement for specific information regarding use of your password.
Yes, but if you log in to a computer and then log in to another computer without logging out of the first, you will be automatically logged out of the first computer.
Foundation Directory Online Content and Features
Foundation Directory Online Essential is a database of the more than 103,000 private, community, operating, and company-sponsored foundations in the U.S. and their keyword-searchable IRS Forms 990-PF.
Foundation Directory Online Professional provides subscribers with access to an unprecedented wealth of timely, comprehensive information on grantmakers and their grants. Included is a database of the entire universe of over 165,000 foundations, corporate giving programs, and grantmaking public charities in the U.S.; a database of over 4,000 sponsoring companies, offering a quick pathway to corporate funders; a database of over 16.6 million grants; and a keyword-searchable database of over 1 million recently filed IRS Forms 990 and 990-PF.
The content of a grantmaker record varies based on the size and nature of the grantmaker and the availability of information. Data elements that might be found include limitations, purpose and activities, fields of interest, geographic focus, transaction types, support strategies, application information, governing bodies, and financial data.
The content of a grant record varies based on the nature of the grant and the availability of information. Data elements that might be found include type of recipient, grant amount, year authorized, duration, description, type(s) of support, and subject(s). Grant records are available in Foundation Directory Online Professional.
The data in Foundation Directory Online is compiled from IRS information returns (Forms 990 and 990-PF), grantmaker web sites, annual reports, printed application guidelines, the philanthropic press, and various other sources. In all, the Foundation Center's editorial staff continually monitors more than 35 diverse information sources to verify the details in our databases. Our editorial team is also in frequent communication with grantmakers nationwide through telephone calls, surveys, and electronic reporting.
A growing number of grantmakers communicate their information to us directly via Foundation Center Updater, for contact, financial, program, and other profile information, and eGrant Reporting, to submit grantmaking updates electronically on a regular basis.
Learn more about the information displayed in Forms 990 and 990-PF, as well as processing errors announced by the IRS.
New and updated grantmaker, company, and grant data appears weekly. New grantmaker-related news, job opportunities, RFPs, publications, and articles appear daily. Social media content is updated live with the most recent activity whenever the tab is opened or refreshed. New IRS Forms 990 and 990-PF are posted when they become available from the IRS.
Profiles for new foundations are typically added to Foundation Directory Online after a foundation files its initial IRS Form 990-PF with the IRS. Generally, Foundation Center won't add a profile for a new foundation at any earlier stage because we've found that most organizations that file preliminary paperwork to become foundations ultimately fail to satisfy IRS private foundation requirements and organize as public charities instead. However, if a new foundation establishes a web presence, receives significant media coverage, or provides sufficient information about its activities in other ways, a profile might be added before its initial IRS Form 990-PF is filed with the IRS.
All FDO plan levels (Essential and Professional) include company-sponsored foundations. Professional subscribers also have access to information on all company-sponsored foundations as well as corporate giving programs and company-sponsored grantmaking public charities. In addition, Professional subscribers have access to the Search Companies database, which includes sponsoring company profiles. Data elements that might be found include business activities, financial data, corporate officers, board of directors, subsidiaries and/or divisions, plants and/or offices, and international operations.
Yes. The Fields of Interest Index includes the names of specific countries that grantmakers have a known giving interest in. The Geographic Focus Index includes the terms "International" and "National; international" to locate grantmakers that award grants outside the U.S.
For Professional subscribers, the Recipient Country search field is used to search for grants awarded to recipients located in a particular country. The Recipient City Index includes the names of non-U.S. cities where grants have been awarded.
Professional subscribers have access to profiles of a growing number of foundations located outside of the United States, and can search by Grantmaker Country to find them.
Foundation Directory Online does provides information on grants to individuals, but Foundation Center also offers an online subscription service designed exclusively for individual grantseekers called Foundation Grants to Individuals Online. You can also refer to Foundation Center's Frequently Asked Questions, where you'll find a list of resources for individual grantseekers.
Search 990s, available at all plan levels, is used to search for IRS Forms 990 and 990-PF recently filed by private foundations and public charities in our database. There are seven search fields available on the Search 990s screen. The first search field provides keyword searching capability across the text of every 990 and 990-PF in our database simultaneously. The remaining six search fields are used to refine your search by various criteria.
Used in conjunction with our Search Grantmakers and Search Grants databases, Search 990s can help you identify even more prospective funders. It is particularly useful for locating grantmakers identifying themselves with very specific terminology not found in our indexes or in the text of our grantmaker profiles. Search 990s can also be used to search for recently awarded grants not meeting our criteria for inclusion in our grants database, usually small grants or grants made by small foundations.
Foundation Directory Online features a comprehensive Help section, search tutorial, and list of frequently asked questions. Subscribers can also visit the Eye on FDO subscribers' blog to stay current on the latest news and enhancements. For additional assistance, subscribers can e-mail or call our Customer Service on (800) 424-9836.