NGOs in Bangladesh: definitions, functions, role, top list with pdf

NGOs in Bangladesh

It is common for all of us to have heard the term NGO or Non-Governmental Organization.

Many of us know that NGO is a type of organization, which is directly associated with various types of social activities. And so, in order to understand the NGO better, we are going to discuss the topic completely in this article today. Hopefully, we get a clear idea about NGOs in Bangladesh as well as a global perspective.

What is NGO?

The word NGO (NGO) is an abbreviated form of the word non-governmental organization. An NGO is a type of non-profit private organization or group. These institutions basically work independently without being under any government. NGOs are sometimes called civil societies or civilized societies. These organizations have social or political goals; For example, human causes are formed at community, national and international levels for the welfare of the environment. And, these NGOs or non-governmental organizations play one of the main roles in international development, aid, and human welfare.

By definition, NGOs are primarily non-profit organizations, but their budgets can run into the millions or even billions of dollars each year.

Basically, these NGOs depend financially on government contributions, private donations, and donations from members and various funding sources.

We recognize this type of organization as a voluntary organization.

Because, according to the legal definition, each country’s monitoring, permitted activities, and supervision may differ, and the definition of an NGO may change accordingly.

How do NGOs raise money?

As mentioned earlier, these types of organizations run mainly on the basis of various grants. And, the sources on which these voluntary organizations depend for funding, such as non-profits,

  • Membership cost
  • Donation
  • Personal donations
  • Selling goods and services

Although not under government control, these NGOs depend heavily on government funding. Large voluntary organizations can have budgets ranging from millions to billions of dollars.

Functions of NGOs in Bangladesh:

Primarily many NGOs rely on volunteers. Again, many voluntary organizations also employ paid, staff.

For this reason, the World Bank divides NGOs into two broad categories 

  1. Operational NGO:

These types of organizations design development projects and focus on implementing them.

  1. Advocacy NGOs:

These organizations try to influence public policy by advocating or promoting a particular cause.

Again, many NGOs fall under both categories simultaneously.

NGOs are usually formed to protect human rights, help improve human health or influence participation in political affairs.

Characteristics of NGOs in Bangladesh

The characteristics of NGOs largely depend on the socio-economic, political, cultural, and legal conditions of a country. However, generally speaking, we can see several primary characteristics of voluntary organizations, they are –

  1. Voluntary Associations:

NGOs are formed based on the common interest of certain groups of people. Basically, these voluntary organizations are formed by their group of like-minded volunteers. People who come together as an organization to solve a specific common problem.

  1. Autonomous:

These types of organizations are an independent type of organizations completely free from government rule, control, and interference. These non-governmental organizations operate according to their own policies and procedures.

  1. Servicing:

These are not-for-profit organizations. These are aspects of social welfare; For example, it works for children’s education, the environment, the protection of wildlife and other animals, and the upliftment of women. Their job is to solve social, economic, cultural, or political causes as well as constantly work for public welfare.

  1. Own funds:

These institutions create and maintain their own funds. Mainly, these organizations collect donations from the public. Even, many private business organizations also provide financial support to NGOs. In addition, some non-governmental organizations are also funded by international authorities.

  1. Legally registered:

However, NGOs can operate without legal registration. However, in most cases, the laws of different countries require that NGOs be legally registered. Also, only legally registered voluntary organizations are able to formally receive grants.

  1. Legitimate Organizations:

Non-Governmental Organizations are not involved in any kind of anti-social or criminal activities.

  1. Non-Profit in Activities:

An NGO earns profits for personal gain However, almost all NGOs conduct some amount of revenue-generating activities. But, the distribution of those earned profits among the board members is totally inappropriate. Instead, this profit should be used to expand the work of the NGO.

Role of NGOs in Bangladesh

In present times, NGOs play a very important role. They go beyond the jurisdiction of the government and try to fill the voids in society. Some of their special works for society are discussed below –

1. Women Empowerment:

NGOs play a major role in working for women’s empowerment. There is a continuous struggle to reduce the oppression of women in society, such as the dowry system, Sati-immolation, domestic cruelty, social threats, female foeticide, and so on. Besides, they also do various activities to provide employment and educate women. Nowadays, these organizations are also working quite actively to eliminate gender inequality.

2. Social Security Providers:

It is for the purpose of public welfare that these NGOs become a major part of solving our social problems and meeting our needs. These organizations play a very important role in providing security to the needy and poor.

3. Progressive Development:

Humans continue to destroy the natural environment to improve their livelihoods. However, NGOs are also monitoring these activities. They are introducing various types of control measures to prevent the overuse of natural resources. So that our health problems or unnecessary natural disasters do not occur due to environmental damage.

4. Various services:

These non-profit organizations act as a mechanism through which people can voice their concerns about any social or economic hardship and feel free to seek help. NGOs make society trust them and create an enabling environment.

5. Participating in Community Conservation:

These organizations offer alternative perspectives to engage in meaningful dialogue with disadvantaged communities and address any type of community-related issue. Many NGOs in India work to preserve and promote the growth of the diverse culture here.

6. Children’s Education:

There are many NGOs, which play an important role in the education of children. At times, they provide free textbooks, computers, and other materials to rural schools. They even provide education, shelter, and services to street children, orphans, or underprivileged children.

7. Improves Government Performance:

Many NGOs work to ensure that the government is acting in a responsive manner or addressing citizens’ concerns. So that the government remains accountable to the country and its citizens. By providing their own research teams and expertise, they allow governments to improve and encourage flexibility in advising and policy-making.

8. Youth Development:

Various types of NGOs also conduct various programs for the development of the youth of society and develop their talents.

9. Protection of animals:

NGOs also play a significant role in stopping animal abuse, cruelty, and torture. They also take great care in protecting the animals.

10. Development of Disabilities:

Various voluntary organizations take various steps to protect their interests and provide healthy life to the disabled and helpless people of society.

11. Infrastructure development and management:

These non-governmental organizations can be used for land acquisition and development purposes. Can even build housing. NGOs also provide basic facilities to society like public toilets and waste collection services. Social reform works are also among the main roles of NGOs.

12. Technical support and training:

These organizations provide technical assistance and training in various fields. For example – giving computer education to children, training rural women to become financially independent, and so on.

13. Facilitates communication: 

NGOs become a channel of communication between people to government and government to people. They facilitate communication between organizations with the help of networking.

14. Acts as a helping hand in a crisis:

There are many NGOs, which undertake social welfare programs during natural calamities like earthquakes, floods, etc. Many NGOs provide substantial relief as well as financial assistance to victims of tsunamis, floods, cyclones, and other natural disasters.

16. Protects the environment:

Many NGOs play a significant role in protecting the environment. They take various programs to prevent water, air, soil, and other environmental pollution, and afforestation.

List of NGOs in Bangladesh

1. ASA (The Association for Social Advancement)

ASA (Association for Social Advancement) is the world’s largest self-sustaining microfinance institution. ASA is recognized as the world’s top microfinance institution in a survey by the world-famous Forbes magazine. ASA aims at socio-economic development and poverty alleviation of the poor. Started in 1978. As of December 2011, ASA’s activities are being conducted through 3,154 branch offices of 511 Thana in 64 districts of Bangladesh. As of December 2011, ASA’s total funds are around five thousand seven hundred fifty-seven crores. Apart from Bangladesh, Asha is distributing microcredit in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Cambodia, Philippines, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda.

2. BRAC (Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee)

BRAC is an international charity. It is one of the largest development organizations in the world. Sir Fazle Hasan Abed established this organization in 1972 after the independence of Bangladesh. It has functions

in 13 countries in Asia, Africa, and America including 64 districts of Bangladesh. According to BRAC’s claim, about 01 (one) lakh workers are currently working in their company. However, 70 percent of them are women workers. 126 million people are covered by BRAC’s services. Through a social enterprise, the organization includes self-funded projects including dairy, food, agriculture, cattle ranching, and handicrafts. Currently, the company has functions in about 14 countries of the world.

3. BURO Bangladesh (Basic unit for resource and opportunity of Bangladesh)

BURO Bangladesh is a national “non-profit” non-governmental organization founded in 1990 with the goal of reducing poverty by working for the underprivileged. It is a dedicated microfinance organization that provides low-income individuals, notably women, who are seen as its primary clients, high-quality flexible financial services. BURO has introduced six loan options, a specialised product for SME clients, two savings product, and one insurance plan to fulfill their ever-expanding financial demands. There is a widespread remittance system in place that is designed to help Bangladeshi expats who work overseas transmit their earnings to members of the family home early. It presents agricultural loans for small-scale and marginal farmers as well as enterprise loans, which are stepped-up loans for clients who are entrepreneurs. The foundation also offers a variety of hardline impoverished development programs as well as a program to lessen the impact of disasters for those who are most at risk. Successful milestones have been reached by BURO, which eventually acquired financial sustainability.

4. Thengamara Mohila Sabuj Sangha (TMSS)

An NGO in Bangladesh called Thengamara Mohila Sabuj Sangha (TMSS) focuses on microfinance. Professor Dr. Hosne Ara Begum established TMSS in Bogra, Bangladesh, in 1980. It is a women-focused Bangladeshi organization seeking to reduce poverty, empower women, and improve Bangladesh’s socioeconomic infrastructure.   To increase the caliber and accessibility of services in Bangladesh’s rural areas, TMSS is collaborating with a number of organizations, including NCC Bank Limited.

5. Shakti Foundation for Disadvantaged Women

Humaira Islam, Ph.D. and a group of social innovators dedicated to underprivileged women’s socioeconomic empowerment via social and financial inclusion founded the Shakti Foundation. As a non-governmental organization established in 1992, its goal is to stabilize social security for disadvantaged women across the nation and end poverty.

The organization provides multi-faceted training, microfinance and entrepreneurship to socially backward women. In these 30 years, the organization has brought more than 5 lakh home-oriented women into the country in this way.

Claiming that the long journey was not easy at all, Shakti Foundation officials said that they had to work non-stop in the face of various obstacles.

Ultimately, they have been able to achieve the desired goal of bringing change in the lives of women through ‘self-reliance’ and empowerment.

Shakti Foundation started working in 1992 with the mindset of empowering women. The beginning was capital-centric. Later it spread across the country.

Organizers claim that this success is due to Shakti Foundation’s microfinance distributed across the country on easy terms, training, and a large trained workforce on the ground to empower women.

6. Society for Social Service (SSS)

In the field of development, the Society for Social Service (SSS) is a nationwide non-governmental organization that was founded in 1986 as a result of the tireless efforts of a number of committed and like-minded people. Over the course of more than three decades, SSS has implemented a variety of welfare and people-friendly activities that are intended to foster sustainable growth in the family and society. SSS does this by adhering to inclusive and creative techniques.

SSS has been ingeniously implementing a series of initiatives to reduce poverty and improve the socioeconomic situation from the very beginning. SSS integrated financial services into the application as important activities in order to achieve the best alternative usage of resources and feasibility and provide job opportunities.

7. UDDIPAN (United Development Initiatives for Programmed Actions) 

Since its founding in 1984, UDDIPAN has advanced via a strategic transformation that gives its beneficiaries’ needs and social demands priority. One of Bangladesh’s ten largest private national development organizations is Uddipan. Currently, Uddipan serves 64 districts and 465 Upazilas. By implementing multifaceted programs, it is steadfastly trying to enhance the standard of living for the extremely poor and those who are exploited on an economic and social level.

8. Padakhep Manabik Unnayan Kendra

In a small, rural community in the Barisal area, Padakhep’s initiative had its start in 1986 using its own funds. Utilizing a holistic development approach is the organization’s philosophy. It strives to enhance the socioeconomic circumstances of the marginalized, underprivileged, and most vulnerable individuals, especially women and children in rural and urban regions. In addition to microfinance, agriculture, agriculture, women’s empowerment, and many other areas, Padakhep has worked towards development in a variety of fields. Padakhep has successfully operated all over the nation with more than 250 branches and offices, a strong workforce of more than 3,500 employees, and a clientele of more than 50 million people owing to their unwavering efforts to overcome various obstacles from the very beginning.

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