Ask Leslie: Which WordPress theme is best for nonprofits?

We've been using WordPress since 2008, and have used themes, plugins, and tools over the years. Some have been great, some were terrible.

The best WordPress theme is the one that's customizable, loads fast, and grows with you over time

The free Astra theme and premium Astra Pro plugin add-on are two of the great ones! The Astra theme is a fast, lightweight, and reliable WordPress theme. The Astra Pro add-on gives you access to even more customizations and powerful features. Together, they provide the foundation that we use to design customized websites for our nonprofit and small business clients.

Astra is an amazing WordPress theme for our web design projects for both nonprofits and businesses. We can design and build a custom website with complex integrations, and our clients can still make edits and add pages if they'd like to.

Unlike WordPress themes you might buy from the mass market theme stores, Astra is a framework that can be anything you want it to be. Pre-packaged themes are notoriously difficult to use, and have a bunch of confusing clutter you don't want. Astra is a foundation that can be used to build many types of websites, from simple to complex. And like most nonprofits do, you can start small and grow over time. It's the only WordPress theme we've ever used that works just as well for beginners as it does for experts.

Check out the Astra Theme and the other tools from the team at Brainstorm Force at

Why we use Astra for our website design projects

  • Easy to learn for beginners and highly customizable for developers
  • Unlimited customization options for design, layout, and styling for designers
  • Clean extensible code and 100% open source allows endless ways to add custom code and integrations
  • Plays well with other WordPress plugins (even the cranky ones like WooCommerce)
  • Designed for performance and load quickly on any device
  • Reliable and stable updates and quick fixes for bugs or vulnerabilities
  • SEO-friendly markup and schema support
  • Accessibility foundation built in and ready to customize
  • Mobile-friendly and fully responsive
  • Works with all major page builders, including Beaver Builder (our pick!) and Elementor

Which version should you buy?

If you're one of our Website Care Plan clients, the license for Astra Pro and other premium tools are included in your monthly plan. Astra Pro and Ultimate Addons (UABB) are the Astra tools most likely used on your website (just ask, we'll help!).

For everyone else, this is what I recommend:

  1. Download the free Astra Theme from the WordPress repository and install it on your website
  2. Purchase Astra Pro plugin to add more features and options to your theme settings
  3. Upgrade to the Essentials Package if you're interested in premium starter templates, or adding a full suite of new modules for Gutenberg, Beaver Builder or Elementor.

NOTE: This page includes affiliate links to Astra, which means if you click over and make a purchase, Astra will give me a few bucks as t thank you. We ONLY share links to tools we trust, use ourselves, and highly recommend to our friends, family and clients.