Different Kinds of NGOs Around the World

Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) are not funded by the state or supported by the government. Most of them are non-profit making organisations which get their funding from individuals or donor companies. There are various types of NGOs, and they all run their operations differently depending on the mandate of their existence. Some of the types of NGOs in the world can be categorised into the following.

NGOs by Orientation

Some of the common types in this category are:

  • Charitable Orientation: This is where the activities of the NGO are meant to meet the needs of the poor. It can be to provide basic requirements such as food, clothing and other material needs. These NGOs are also known to actively participate during disasters.
  • Service Orientation: As the name suggests, these NGOs provide vital services such as medical, housing, education, family planning and other assistance which people may need but do not have access to.
  • Participatory Orientation: In this kind of NGO, the local people who are being targeted are allowed to actively participate in implementing the project. For instance, if they are executing a house building task, it is the people on the ground who do the work.
  • Empowering Orientation: These kinds of NGOs are dedicated to empowering communities to be aware of the social, political and economic issues which are affecting them, and how they can rise from oppression.

Level Operation

This method of categorisation is used to place NGOs on where they operate, and the platform they use to relate.

  • International NGOs: These are NGOs which have their operation extending to different parts of the world. They work with local NGOs and governments, and some agencies, such as the United Nations (UN) have been known to fund projects that are being implemented by other NGOs and individuals. Examples of international NGOs include the UN, OXFAM, and Save The Children, among others.
  • National NGOs: These have their operations restricted to their country, and they are mostly professionals such as the YMCA, Red Cross and other organisations. They may liaise with other branches, but their operations are always limited to the country where they are based.
  • Community-Based Organisations (CBOs): These are small scale organisations which operate within the community. Most of them deal with issues affecting a particular demographic. They are mostly formed to address specific needs. For instance, in a society where the literacy level is low, a CBO on empowering people to go to school will emerge to address the need.
  • City Wide Organisations: Examples of city-wide organisations include Lions Club, and The Rotary, among others. Almost every city has this type of NGO, and they engage in different activities every year. Whether you are a volunteer or are looking for work with NGOs, it helps to know how they operate so that you can find how best you will fit in.