Wednesday, February 6

Google Custom Search covering foundations

Lucy Bernholz shared this post yesterday from the NTEN listserve:

"To assist E-Democracy.Org's grant prospecting efforts I put together a little (big actually) Google Custom Search covering foundations, somegovernment funding sites, and sites with fund raising advice fornon-profits. Why not share it with the world? Try it out from:

Google Custom Search has a nifty option where you can say search all of the sites or partial sites to which a certain pages links. The main area where the search can be improved is by adding pages with links tosmaller community foundations. I've opened up the search engine to volunteer contributions."
She then goes on to make this wise observation:
I remember several years ago being asked by a 20-something nonprofit executive why anyone would need the Foundation Center. "Can't I just Google everything I need to know?" he asked. The question, and the search engine above, reveal a lot about how things have changed. There is such experienced-based assurance among Internet users that they can find what they need to know, by themselves. There is good reason to believe that many relevant funders can be found on the Web - though I don't know if anyone has counted foundation websites (which would be found by Google) and compared it to the 10,000 foundation database maintained by the Foundation Center or the larger universe of grants and funders catalogued by FoundationSearch. Savvy users of any search engine must always wonder what they are not finding, but so should users of industry sources such as the Foundation Center.
I've often said that there are some fundraisers who are cool enough to be "on the bus," and then there are others - like Lucy - who are so cool that they are literally helping to drive the bus.

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