How to get help starting an orphanage

Written by adele eliot
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How to get help starting an orphanage
You can advertise online for help with starting your orphanage. (computer image by martini from

Setting up an orphanage can be daunting even for the most motivated of people. A lack of funding, language barriers and foreign red tape can hinder the set-up process, and this can be frustrating when you're eager to get started. If you're setting up an orphanage, it's important to ask for help. Where people might not be able to donate any money to your cause, they might be willing to donate their time.

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  1. 1

    Decide where you want to locate the orphanage. You might have a specific country or area in mind already, or you might be open to setting up anywhere. This decision will dictate what kind of help you need, your start-up costs and the laws you will have to consider.

  2. 2

    Find a project coordinator. This might be a job you can do yourself, but unless you are willing to work on the orphanage full time or, if the orphanage is abroad, move to a new country, you will need a coordinator to help you with details of the project. Advertise in the orphanage's local area for someone with managerial experience. If you can't find anyone local, advertise the position as a volunteer role for college graduates or those looking for a career change.

  3. 3

    Calculate how much money you will need for initial set-up and long-term operating expenses. Include the cost of food, clothing, education, electricity and staffing. Set-up costs might also include purchasing land or buildings and making renovations. Once you have calculated your short-term and long-term costs, you will know how much money you need to raise.

  4. 4

    Write a business plan. Not only will this help clarify what you need to get the orphanage started, it will be useful to present to potential sponsors or donors. Specify the amounts you need for tangible things, such as "X dollars will enable us to provide 10 children with education for a month." This will give investors a better idea of what they are putting their money toward.

  5. 5

    Begin fundraising as early as possible. In addition to cash, you can ask people to donate building materials or books, or volunteer their help. If you can find someone to volunteer his teaching services for six months, you will save the cost of a staff member for that time. Advertise your charity as widely as possible and ask people to give time or money.

  6. 6

    Research government grants, sponsorships, partnerships and charitable donations. The availability of these resources will depend on where your orphanage is based. Some U.S. organisations fund international projects. Also consider using the orphanage land to produce goods, for example by turning it into a fruit or fish farm. Not only will this produce food for the children, but you can sell surplus produce for income.

  7. 7

    Find an international lawyer. She will help you with local laws and requirements for setting up an orphanage. You will also need to register your organisation in the United States to receive charitable donations. You can also ask lawyers or law students to volunteer their time to reduce your costs.

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