Definitions of NGO

Definitions of NGO

NGO: Non-governmental organizations

Non governmental organizations, acronym NGO by ABBREVIATIONFINDER, English Non-governmental Organizations [n ɔ ng ʌ vn Mentl ɔ ː gəna ɪ ze ɪ ʃ nz], abbreviation NGO [end ʒ i ː ə ʊ ], originally term for the private support of Development Assistance.

Today, nationally and internationally active non-governmental organizations with different areas of activity are recognized as non-governmental organizations. B. Organizations for environmental protection (Greenpeace), human rights (Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch), medical aid (Doctors Without Borders), women, children (terre des hommes), peace. The term “non-governmental organizations” also includes small and very small organizations without complex organizational structures.

Worldwide there are around 2,800 non-governmental organizations that have consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations, including churches, political foundations and other professionally, personally and financially efficient private organizations with many years of experience in development cooperation. In Germany there are around 140 non-governmental organizations (2019) in the Association of Development Policy of German Non-Governmental Organizations. V. (VENRO) merged.

State and private development cooperation complement each other. Non-governmental organizations, for example, often have an intermediary function as sponsors of state-financed development aid projects. In addition to program and project funding, there has been a country and sector-specific exchange of views between the federal government and non-governmental organizations in recent years. In 2014, German non-governmental organizations received almost € 64 million in funding from the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

The strength of the non-governmental organizations lies in their proximity to underprivileged population groups. They mobilize the people’s initiative, train local specialists and use v. a. the resources of the developing country concerned. This leads to greater efficiency in the use of funds. In addition, they are less subject to economic and political constraints than state institutions.

Non-governmental organizations play an equally important role in the field of human rights protection at international and national level, v. a. in the area of ​​information gathering. The most important tool is to mobilize the public at home and abroad or external official bodies about practices that violate human rights in individual countries. The same applies to the non-governmental organizations active in the field of environmental protection, some of which try to make the public aware of problems through spectacular campaigns. In all cases, one of the forms of action of the non-governmental organizations is influencing political decision-makers.

The non-governmental organizations are also gaining in importance internationally. As a result of professional organizational forms and international networking, they have become competent experts in sought-after interlocutors with governments and international organizations. Also at international conferences, e.g. B. Human Rights Conference, World Population Conference, World Social Summit, World Conference on Women and World Climate Conferences or (annually since 1995) Conference of the Parties, the non-governmental organizations achieved – partly also through the organization of »counter-summits«, e. B. the world social forums organized since 2001  - influence on media and politics.

The UN Economic and Social Council has a standing committee for cooperation with non-governmental organizations, which also decides on the extent of their participation rights (consultative status) in the activities of the UN. Well-organized non-governmental organizations are increasingly perceived or presented as representatives of civil society, especially in the political arena. The problem here is the question of their legitimacy and thus the legitimacy of their inclusion in political decisions.


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