“Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dream.”
-Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist.

Steps to Starting Your Own Nonprofit Organization

1. Dream. It all starts with an idea.
2. Test out your business idea, research it and make sure the idea is a good one.
3. Reserve your business/organization name.
4. Design a logo (or ask someone that can to do this for you) and order business cards.
5. Decide who your trusted board members are, and invite them to your first meeting.
6. Incorporate your business.
7. Create (or copy, paste and modify) bylaws.
8. Create a bank account (and keep receipts for everything).
– somewhere in between, have your first meeting (Notes, notes, notes! Record those volunteer hours!) –
9. Create an excel budget worksheet.
10. Create bylaws.
11. Form 1023 – Fill in the blanks.
12. Form 1023 – Complete the requested attachments.
13. Form 1023- Look through and verify directions for the attachments.
14. Take a break from form 1023 before you lose your mind.
15. Come back to form 1023 and review everything.
16. Make an appointment with the Small Development Center in your area.

I’m here, I’m here!! Can we all just take a moment to celebrate Peace Tree Africa’s progress thus far?! When we look back this way, it looks (and feels) really good. But nothing was more encouraging than the look on Chuck’s face when I spread out all of the loose pages of that evil form and its’ attachments.