Non-governmental organization are neither government based nor a conventional profit-making business. They are usually set up by citizens and people who love to help others and focus on the problem that other citizens certainly neglect. They are funded by governments, foundations, businesses and individuals.
The World Bank, for example, defines NGOs as “private organizations that pursue activities to relieve suffering, promote the interests of the poor, protect the environment, provide basic social services, or undertake community development.” World Bank Key Document, Working with NGOs, adds, “In wider usage, the term NGO can be applied to any non-profit organization which is independent from government. NGOs are typically value-based organizations which depend, in whole or in part, on charitable donations and voluntary service. Although the NGO sector has become increasingly professionalized over the last two decades, principles of altruism and voluntarism remain key defining characteristics.”
India is estimated to have had around 2 million NGOs in 2009, just over one NGO per 600 Indians, and many times the number of primary schools and primary health centres in India. An NGO basically works for certain types of activities like human rights, environmental, or development work. An NGO’s level of operation indicates the scale at which an organization works, such as local, regional, national or international. They play a very important role in the international development. They are one group of players who are active in the efforts of international development and increasing the welfare of poor people in poor countries too. Development-oriented NGOs, which have existed for centuries, have played a growing role in development throughout the world since the end of World War II. There are currently 20,000 international NGOs. They are frequently idealized as committed “doing good” organizations.
Despite talk of how NGOs are spreading democratic institutions and liberal values, or saving the environment, the bulk of funds flowing through NGOs remains focused on basic humanitarian assistance and development: delivering goods and services in poor countries using resources from rich countries.
As every coin has two sides,There has also been criticism on how NGOs have used their funding and other money received or raised. Criticisms range from pointing out that only small percentages go to people in need, that a lot goes to recover costs, and some have even been used to pay very high salaries of the people at the top of these organizations. Believe it or not, NGO’s are the source of living for people or causes that we care the least.
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