Clever Ways Nonprofits Can Use Amazon

by Danielle Bloom

2 min read

When your nonprofit survives on donations, you have to be creative about generating contributions and keeping costs low, and in some cases, that means looking for corporate sponsorships or utilizing corporate tools. To support goodwill throughout the country, numerous corporations in Canada offer funding, grants, and tools to nonprofit organizations and charities.

Air Canada

This Canadian based airline is devoted to helping nonprofits soar to their highest heights, and it always accepts requests for donations. In particular, Air Canada tends to support youth organizations and groups doing research to cure diseases, but any organization can apply for support. The application is available on the company’s website, and it takes about 20 to 30 minutes to complete.


Allstate’s popular slogan “you’re in good hands with Allstate” doesn’t just apply to the company’s business practices. It also extends to its corporate responsibility platform. To support charities and nonprofits in particular, the company formed the Allstate Foundation of Canada, and this organization has been providing grants to nonprofits since 1977. It accepts applications for grants to cover research projects, operating funds, debt financing, equipment, and seed money. In some cases, the foundation even offers matching grants — you hold a fundraiser and Allstate matches the donations generated. Grants tend to go to organizations focused on education, crime prevention, and home safety.

American Express

This credit card provider extends financial support to organizations designed to preserve and enrich the country’s cultural heritage. In the past, American Express has been the sponsor of Winterlude as well as a signature partner of the Contemporary Collection Program at the Art Gallery of Ontario. You can submit a request for sponsorship though the mail to the American Express Foundation in Toronto.


Amazon’s donation wish list can be a really effective free tool for nonprofits and charities. The wish list is ideal for donors who prefer to give physical gifts rather than cash, as it lets them know exactly where their money is being spent. Here’s how the Wish List works. You set up an Amazon account, and create a list of items your organization needs. For instance, if you run a shelter, you may want blankets, personal hygiene items, or toys for children. Interested donors then go to Amazon, find your wish list, and choose items to purchase. Once they pay for the purchase, the goods are delivered directly to your organization. You may also want to check out Amazon Web Services. Although not expressly designed for nonprofits, AWS can be invaluable in the nonprofit sector, especially for small or newly emerging organizations. With AWS, you no longer have to spend a lot of money upfront on infrastructure, equipment, and software licenses. Rather, you access the services you need through the cloud, and Amazon takes care of the support in the background. You can pay in advance for a year’s worth of services, or you can pay as you go, in which case you only incur charges for the services your organization actually needs. When soliciting donations, you don’t necessarily want to rely on lots of small donations from individuals. Instead, you may want to up the potential by reaching out to successful corporations with big pockets. Lots of them are willing to help.

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