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What is a "Nonprofit Organization"?
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Defining Nonprofit Organization
The Nonprofit Commons endeavors to be an inclusive and welcoming community, for all individuals and groups seeking to make the world -- both real and virtual -- a better place. In general our meetings and services are accessible and available freely to all. That said, we do reserve our free virtual office spaces to what we consider to be "social benefit organizations."
We are aware that there are a diversity of legal definitions and opinions about what constitutes a “nonprofit organization,” “social benefit organization” or “civil society group.”*
For our purposes, the following shall be guidelines that we apply to all organizations applying for tenant space on the Nonprofit Commons:
The organization should have some of the common attributes of a formally incorporated entity, i.e. a board of directors, officers, bylaws, regular meetings, and some headquarters where they can be reached. These should be made available by the organization at the request of the Nonprofit Commons staff.
The organization should be primarily focused on supporting particular socially beneficial goals, rather than goals that are primarily of benefit to the owners or staff of the association. I.e. an environmental organization, charitable group, or human rights group.
The organization should have some longevity of purpose beyond a particular event or instance in time. I.e. a fundraiser concert for a sick resident would not constitute a qualifying organization, but the Relay for Life, which has association with the American Cancer Society, would qualify.
rather than hard and fast
. The Nonprofit Commons staff reserves the right to make exceptions for particularly worthy situations and causes. The final arbiter of whether or not an organization qualifies is Glitteractica Cookie / Susan Tenby of TechSoup.
Again, the above applies specifically to organizations that are applying for free virtual office space in the Nonprofit Commons.
* For references to other definitions, see the following links:
United States Internal Revenue Service, 501(c)(3)
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