I’ve had a couple of people ask about this, so I figured it bears explaining on the blog.
When searching for a fundraising grant you may notice that the organization has some verbiage on their site or application that sounds like this,
We understand and accept that all funds and/or donations received by (GRANT ORG) are under the ultimate control of (GRANT ORG) to make all final decisions regarding distributing and/or grants and loans of any funds.
or something like…
All funds generated become the property of (GRANT ORG), a 501(c) (3) charity. Due to IRS regulations, we cannot guarantee all funds received will benefit your personal adoption expenses. We makes a best effort to afford you your requested grant.
This may make you a little leery because basically they’re saying “Your friends and family donate money to your adoption through us but, hey, we don’t have to give it to you.”
But there is no need for alarm!
As the second paragraph states, this verbiage is part of their IRS compliance to be a 501(c)(3) organization. In fact ANY non-profit organization should be using the same verbiage. If a non-profit allows its donors to dictate where the funds go then they are actually violating IRS regulations. So they have to let you know that they have final say over where the money goes.
That being said, I have never heard of an adoption grant organization NOT honoring the wishes of the donor and you should be pretty confident in receiving all your funds if you are using a reputable organization.