Funding a Nonprofit Music Organization

Future public education will require involvement and collaboration among various local, civic, private and nonprofit entities, a concept I like to refer to as ‘community entrepreneurship.’ ~ Donald Bren

Running a nonprofit, such as a community band, can be a very challenging project in today’s world. For example in big cities like Seattle, finding a practice venue that doesn’t require a million dollar insurance in addition to paying for the space at an hourly rate is just part of the story. So a big part of a running a successful program is funding the program.

We have found that for concerts, rather than charging an entrance fee, we get more participation with a “suggested” ticket fee. We also run a bake sale that brings in a significant return on investment. But that isn’t enough to support the band. So there are two programs I’d like to suggest.

AmazonCharityFirst there is the Amazon Smile program where a percentage of what you purchase can go to a charity of your choice. Today, for example, they are gifting registered charities 5% of eligible purchases. Normally, it .5% of purchases.

For the community band my wife and I play in, Amazon has contributed over $200 for each of us over the 3 years we have been participating. My mom contributes too, to there is more money that goes to our favorite charity.

What is AmazonSmile?

AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization. You can choose from nearly one million organizations to support.

How do I shop at AmazonSmile?

To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. You may also want to add a bookmark to to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at AmazonSmile.

Which products on AmazonSmile are eligible for charitable donations?

Tens of millions of products on AmazonSmile are eligible for donations. You will see eligible products marked “Eligible for AmazonSmile donation” on their product detail pages. Recurring Subscribe-and-Save purchases and subscription renewals are not currently eligible.

Can I use my existing account on AmazonSmile?

Yes, you use the same account on and AmazonSmile. Your shopping cart, Wish List, wedding or baby registry, and other account settings are also the same.

How do I select a charitable organization to support when shopping on AmazonSmile?

On your first visit to AmazonSmile (, you need to select a charitable organization to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. We will remember your selection, and then every eligible purchase you make at will result in a donation.

FreddieCharityAnother very successful program that I just learned about is the Fred Meyer Community Rewards program. By aligning your Fred Meyer Rewards Card with your favorite charity, you can directly help keep that program going. Fred Meyer donates money to nonprofits in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon and Washington, based on customers who link their Rewards card to one nonprofit. You’ll continue to earn your personal rewards points when you link your card.

As our community band is already hooked up to Amazon Smile, I am now going to look into the Fred Meyer program. Play on.

About Gandalfe

Just an itinerant saxophonist trying to find life between the changes. I have retired from the Corps of Engineers and Microsoft. I am an admin on the Woodwind Forum, run the Seattle Solid GOLD Big Band (formerly the Microsoft Jumpin' Jive Orchestra) a GOLD sax quartet, and enjoy time with family and friends.
This entry was posted in Band, Band Management, FAQ, Guides, Music and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s