Starting a Nonprofit

CT Nonprofits receives calls every week from ambitious individuals who want to start a nonprofit organization. In order to help them navigate the waters, we have found resources that provide guidance and food for thought. We also highly recommend that if you are thinking of starting a nonprofit, you consult our Principles & Practices for Nonprofit Excellence in Connecticut.

If you have any resources that you’d like to share with the nonprofit community, please email a brief description, and link or PDF to Katie Breslin.


Where to begin

Pro Bono Partnership provides pro bono business legal services to nonprofit agencies in CT, New Jersey and NY, in the belief that the knowledge and application of sound legal practices make nonprofit organizations more effective and better able to focus their resources on supplying vital services to the community.

Nonprofit Law Resource Library – Checklist and resources for starting a nonprofit in CT

Small Business Development Center, Central Connecticut State University

5-Step Guide & Resources from the National Council of Nonprofits

Why Running a Nonprofit is the Hardest Job in Business

Guides & Exercises

 Top Ten Strategic Principles for Nonprofit Organizations: Developing a set of principles to position a not for profit organization for success is a challenge in this day and age. Our world is changing and evolving, and at lightening speed. Without the simple bottom line for measurement, where you are going and how you are getting there can confound even the best strategic planners.

 So you want to start a nonprofit!: Ten steps to starting a nonprofit organization.

 Business Planning for Nonprofits: What It Is and Why It Matters

The business-planning process offers nonprofit decision makers an opportunity to connect the dots between mission and programs, to specify the resources required to deliver those programs, and to establish performance measures.

How to Start a Nonprofit Organization A five-step outline from a graduate-level class on how to create a charitable nonprofit organization.

Other tools and considerations

Tools to Help Nonprofit Organizations 

Faith-Based HUD Tookit

CT Nonprofits’ Tips for Starting a Nonprofit

Look before you leap! This information was amassed with a little help from our friends. Before going through the process of starting a new charity we strongly encourage you to read the first two FAQs.

Before you begin, some issues to consider.

Five alternatives to starting a nonprofit.

What are the key steps in forming a nonprofit?

What forms and documents do we have to file?

What takes place at our first board meeting?

Who can I contact at the IRS that can help?



Strategic Tools for Social Entrepreneurs

Venture Forth!

Empowering You To Help

Strategic Planning for Public and Nonprofit Organizations : A Guide to Strengthening and Sustaining Organizational Achievement

Succeeding with Consultants: Self-Assessment for the Changing Nonprofit


Online Support

The Nonprofit Handbook (courtesy of

Nonprofit Good Practice Guide

Accounting Standards & Government Regulations from the Non-Profit Resource Center

State of Connecticut Homepage

Secretary of State's Office

American Incorporators

Parcorps Services


Nonprofit Risk Center

FirstGov for Nonprofits

Nonprofit Zone

Society for Nonprofits Organizations

  Indicates 4Good Contribution