45 Powerful Non-Profit Business Ideas That Matter

Updated: July 24th, 2023

Would you like to start your own non-profit business or earn money on the side, but still need to find the right business idea?

There will be countless exciting business ideas again in 2021. While it sounds exciting to start your own business, it's important that you run with the right idea.

Your goal should be to build a business in a niche that is not only profitable but can also ensure your long-term success.

Hopefully, all of the non-profit business ideas listed here will give you inspiration and a head start for the 2021 year.

1. Start a crafts business

If you're interested in starting a crafts business begin by gathering the necessary materials, tools, and a dedicated workspace to create your unique products.

In addition to crafting expertise, it’s important to possess basic business skills such as marketing, pricing, and customer service.

To sell your items, you can participate in local craft fairs take advantage of online platforms like Etsy, or create your own website.

It’s crucial to keep track of your expenses and profits to ensure that you’re making a profit. Nevertheless, running a crafts business can be a fulfilling and creative way to channel your passion for making things.

How much you can make: $600/month

How much does it cost to start: $5,500 (?)

How long does it take to build: 180 days (?)

How I Validated My Business On Etsy And Launched My Own Handcrafted Artistry Shop

DownHomeModern's Marc Staples turned his creativity into a successful business through handcrafting windbells and chimes with a rustic style that pays homage to American Southwest decor.

Marc started DownHomeModern LLC almost 3 years ago
Marc grew the business to $600/month
It cost Marc $5500 to start the business
Read by 2,177 founders

2. Start an art show business

3. Start an athletic tournament business

4. Start a recipe books business

If cooking is your passion, consider starting a recipe book business. You can create recipe books and sell them online or at a physical bookstore. To start a recipe book writing business, identify a niche and apply your creativity in creating unique recipes.

How much you can make: $26,000 — $62,000/month

How long does it take to build: 365 days (?)

How I Started A $15K/Month Food Blog For Fitness Enthusiasts

How one food blogger turned his passion into a business that brings in $15k-$20k per month through display advertising, affiliate marketing, and exclusive content, and doubled in revenue every year since going full time in 2018.

Mason started Kinda Healthy Recipes almost 7 years ago
Mason grew the business to $26K/month
It cost Mason $10000 to start the business
Read by 11,561 founders

5. Start a localympics business

6. Start a film fundraising business

How much does it cost to start: $150 (?)

How long does it take to build: 90 days (?)

7. Start a dodge ball tournament business

8. Start a dance marathon business

9. Start a scavenger hunt business

How much you can make: $7,500/month

How long does it take to build: 25 days (?)

How I Make A Living Constructing 'The Perfect Day' For Random Strangers

Constructed Adventures, a company that creates custom-tailored adventures for special occasions, charges a flat rate for adventures and expects a profit of around 60k in 2019, having learned valuable lessons about pricing structure for events, always being open and transparent, and using Google Drive to organize expenses and schedules among other tips.

Chris started Constructed Adventures about 8 years ago
Chris grew the business to $7.5K/month
Read by 5,140 founders

10. Start a bike relays hosting business

11. Start a master chef tv show

12. Start a quiz bowl business

13. Start a donation business

14. Start a hairless fundraising business

15. Start a charity event hosting business

16. Start an animal adoption organization business

An animal adoption organization facilitates the adoption process to connect animals in need with loving homes.

As an entrepreneur venturing into this business, you will be responsible for rescuing and caring for animals while matching them with compatible adopters who can provide them with a permanent home.

This fulfilling venture not only helps animals in finding a better life, but also caters to the growing demand for pet adoption.

Given the increasing awareness of animal welfare and the desire for companionship, running an animal adoption organization can offer a promising opportunity to make a positive impact on the lives of both animals and prospective pet owners.

17. Become a race organizer

How much you can make: $95,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 180 days (?)

How I Started A $95K/Month Business Organizing Virtual Races

Virtual Run Events started as a small community project with just $1,000, but has now raised over $860,000 for charities all over the world through virtual races which have become increasingly popular, with their aim being to raise $1 million by the end of 2021.

Angela started Virtual Run Events powered by Moon Joggers about 11 years ago
Angela grew the business to $95K/month
It cost Angela $1000 to start the business
Read by 6,192 founders

18. Start a house party organizing business

19. Start a tie dye party business

20. Start a roller race business

21. Start a trash art auction business

22. Start an upcycled furniture business

Are you looking for a unique and eco-friendly business idea? Look no further than starting an upcycled furniture business! Upcycling is the process of taking discarded or unwanted items and giving them new life by repurposing them into something functional and beautiful.

Starting an upcycled furniture business involves finding unwanted or unused furniture, such as old dressers, desks, or chairs, and giving them a fresh look. This can be done by sanding, staining, painting, or repurposing the furniture with different hardware or embellishments. The end result is a one-of-a-kind piece of furniture that is not only functional but also adds character and charm to any room.

One tip for running a successful upcycled furniture business is to have a clear vision and aesthetic. Develop a consistent style that is easily recognizable and appealing to your target market. This can be achieved using a specific color palette or incorporating certain design elements such as mid-century modern or farmhouse styles.

Another tip is to have a solid online presence. Today, most consumers search for products and services online, so it’s essential to have a website and social media accounts to showcase your work and connect with potential customers. It’s also essential to have high-quality images of your work to showcase your craftsmanship and help attract potential customers.

In addition, it’s essential to have a wide variety of items on hand. Creating various furniture styles, sizes, and price points will appeal to a broader range of customers and make it more likely that they will find something they love. Lastly, have excellent customer service, and be responsive to clients’ needs, even if it’s more work than expected.

Starting an upcycled furniture business is a fulfilling and innovative way to turn discarded items into something beautiful and valuable. It is also a great way to help the environment by keeping unwanted items out of landfills and giving them a new lease on life. With a clear vision, consistent aesthetic, and strong online presence, your upcycled furniture business can be a success.

23. Start a roller race business

24. Start an under-privileged school business

25. Start a tree planting service

Planting trees on your property is an excellent long-term investment. While trees will take years to grow, the profits from a tree farm can be enormous.

Luckily, the tree planting business does not require much daily work, so do not take much of your time.

If you are interested in starting a tree farming business, you will need a piece of land you do not plan to use soon.

How much you can make: $10,000/month

The 6-Figure Houseplant Blogger

Founder of Ohio Tropics, Raffaele Di Lallo, turned his houseplant blog into a six-figure business generating around $10,000 per month through revenue, with 80-90% coming from display ads, and is responsible for all content production, including book authorship.

Raffaele started Ohio Tropics almost 7 years ago
Raffaele grew the business to $10K/month
Read by 576 founders

26. Start an alcohol free club business

27. Start a graffiti removal business

Are you interested in starting a graffiti removal business? Great choice! This is a great way to make a positive impact in your community and earn some extra income.

So, what does a graffiti removal business entail? Essentially, your job will be to remove graffiti from buildings, walls, and other surfaces in your area. Removing graffiti can be done through various methods, such as pressure washing, sandblasting, or specialized graffiti removal products.

You’ll need a few key things to start your graffiti removal business. First, you’ll need to purchase or rent the equipment you’ll need, such as pressure washers, sandblasters, and protective gear. You’ll also need to research and buy effective and environmentally friendly graffiti removal products.

In terms of operating your business, you’ll need to advertise your services to potential clients and negotiate prices with them. You’ll also need to schedule and coordinate your work with clients and be prepared to travel to different locations.

Starting a graffiti removal business is an excellent opportunity to make a difference in your community. It is also a good opportunity to earn some extra income. Just be sure to research, invest in the right equipment, and be prepared to work hard and make your business a success!

28. Start an animal saving business

29. Start a vices campaign business

30. Start a green living business

How long does it take to build: 272 days (?)

31. Start a pawn brokerage business

A pawn broker lends money in exchange for personal property that the broker can sell if the loan is not repaid by a specific time. Pawn brokers charge interest rates, often higher than the banks.

To start a pawn brokerage, open a physical shop where loan applicants will drop their valuables. Develop a binding contract so loanees can sign their commitment when applying for the loan.

32. Start an in-home senior care business

With the busy lifestyle, family members are often absent and employ in-home caregivers to look after the elderly parents.

Caregivers assist the elderly with personal care routines, including bathing, grooming, dressing, toileting, and exercising. Caregivers also oversee medication & prescription usage and administer medicine.

Researchers anticipate a shortage of more than 100,000 caregivers for the elderly in the next decade. Therefore, starting an in-home senior care business is a great opportunity if you enjoy caring for the elderly and spending time with them. You can choose to work as an overnight caregiver or whichever work schedule suits you.

How much you can make: $250,000/month

How long does it take to build: 150 days (?)

How I Started A $250K/Month A Home Care And Nursing Service Provider

The CareSide scaled to $5 million in revenue over 3 years by utilizing a data-driven approach to sales and marketing, with a focus on Google Adwords and Facebook ads, and implementing extensive automation into back end systems.

Gareth started The CareSide over 6 years ago
Gareth grew the business to $250K/month
It cost Gareth $200000 to start the business
Read by 14,914 founders

33. Start a fundraising consulting business

A fundraising consulting business helps organizations, non-profits, and individuals raise money for various causes or projects.

As a consultant, you would identify funding needs and develop and implement a strategy to meet them, including researching funding sources, writing grant proposals, organizing fundraising events, and managing donor relations.

To start this business, you will need a strong understanding of fundraising, a network of potential funding sources, and possibly licenses or certifications.

To be successful, you will need excellent communication and networking skills, the ability to think creatively and strategically, and an understanding of industry trends and best practices. You will also need to manage your business finances, including setting service prices and tracking income and expenses.

How much you can make: $7,000 — $166,666,666/month

How long does it take to build: 195 days (?)

How I Started A Crowdfunding-As-A-Service Platform That Helped 200K Projects Raise Over $200M

ConnectionPoint's founder and CEO, Daryl Hatton, shares his experience of launching an enterprise-class crowdfunding-as-a-service platform that has helped almost 200,000 projects in 40+ countries raise over $200 million, and offers valuable insights on taking a focused approach to growth and pivoting the business to solve customer problems.

Daryl started ConnectionPoint over 15 years ago
Daryl grew the business to $150K/month
It cost Daryl $600000 to start the business
Read by 5,774 founders

34. Start a first aid kits business

35. Start a health care campaign business

36. Start a storage facility

Starting a storage space business is an accessible venture that allows you to utilize unused space effectively.

Additionally, you can start this with little capital. If you have available space, such as a warehouse, garage, or unused rooms, you can repurpose it for storage purposes.

Apart from renting out storage space, self-storage facilities make money by selling locks, cardboard boxes, packing supplies, insurance, and other products.

Pros of starting a storage space business include the following:

  • Great profit potential
  • Growing demand
  • Low overhead compared to other businesses
  • Requires minimal management

How much you can make: $150,000 — $2,500,000/month

How long does it take to build: 180 days (?)

How I Started A $100K/Month Logistics And Delivery Service Company

How a logistics company grew its revenue over 300% in 2 years, starting with just 2 vans and 25k+ square feet of warehouse space, and focused on relationships, efficiency, and building trust with its customers.

Ben started Velocity International Group over 8 years ago
Ben grew the business to $150K/month
Read by 11,966 founders

37. Start a charity auction service business

38. Start a stress/anxiety coaching business

39. Start a charity casino organizing business

40. Start a disabled people foundation

41. Start a thrifty resale business

42. Start a refitting houses business

43. Start a charitable information business

44. Start a first aid training business

meet the author
Pat Walls

I'm Pat Walls and I created Starter Story - a website dedicated to helping people start businesses. We interview entrepreneurs from around the world about how they started and grew their businesses.