NGOs, also known as non-profit organizations or charities play a pivotal role in the structure of our society. Their sole purpose is education and upliftment of the society. These organizations operate independent of the government and are not profit-oriented. Though NGOs focus primarily on developing and under-developed countries, they do undertake projects in developed countries as well.
NGOs fall into two categories but can be a combination of both – Operational NGOs and Advocacy NGOs. Operational NGOs design development projects, where they focus on creating programs both locally and globally. This includes assembling volunteers, financial resources and other resources for the respective projects. On the other hand, advocacy NGOs promote and defend specific causes to influence change, such as campaigns, demonstrations, marches and other events.
We understand what NGOs are but what is their role in society? How do they affect the socio-economic system of the state?
Role of NGOs
NGOs are considered the tertiary sector of the economy. They are autonomous bodies driven by the need for balance in society. NGOs fill the gap between the government and the for-profit sector. As economies modernize, they have begun to shift to private enterprise and free markets where making profits is the main objective. This contributes to a rise in economic and social inequality. NGOs balance the scales between the excessiveness of capitalism and the limitations of the state by alleviating the neglected needs of the society.
NGOs have always been advocates for those who do not have a voice in the society. These organizations attempt to affect and change government policies and programs on their behalf. They ensure that neither the government nor the private sector does not exploit the society and the environment for their personal or political gain. How do they keep them accountable? NGOs gather citizens who come together and raise their voices in support of social, economic and environmental change.
While raising voices is one aspect of NGOs, the other is designing and implementing projects that can help develop the society. They pick up on socio-economic areas that the government overlooks and work towards improving them. Their initiatives cover all aspects of society including education, environment, health, arts and culture, medical and financial aid, emergency relief, etc. The NGOs bring individuals with a common goal together to improve smaller communities which collectively contribute to improving the society at large.
Through the advocacy of social and environmental rights and development projects, NGOs not only enrich the society but keep the other sectors accountable. They encourage individuals to take responsibility without financial gain through volunteering to promote social values that resonate with them. They create awareness and drive initiative. Thereby, NGOs promote self-organization of our society.
Do you have a social cause that resonates with you? Would you like to spend some time giving back to the society? Then, you can sign up with us at Chezuba. We have various projects for online volunteering that requires only a couple of hours, an internet connection and a phone or computer.