What Is an NGO?

6 Mar 2024
Volunteering 2

In this amazing world, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) act as a vital force for change, tirelessly working to improve lives and provide necessary support to individuals and communities in need. Their fields of work vary greatly, striving to protect human rights, promote social and economic development, and preserve the environment and nature while enhancing justice and equality.

Thanks to their freedom and independence, NGOs successfully tackle global and local challenges, addressing urgent needs and humanitarian emergencies. They represent the strength of civil society and demonstrate our human capacity to achieve many accomplishments that make a real difference in people's lives.

In this article, we will learn about the concept of an NGO, the characteristics of NGOs, and examples of these organizations, as well as get acquainted with some of the most prominent NGOs in Jordan.


What Are Non-Governmental Organizations?


Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are independent, non-profit entities that operate within civil society, independently from the government. These organizations aim to achieve social, environmental, or humanitarian objectives, working to improve lives and provide support and services to those in need.

NGOs work across various issues and areas, such as human rights, economic and social development, education, healthcare, environmental protection, women's empowerment, humanitarian emergencies, and many more.


The Difference Between Governmental Organizations and Non-governmental Organizations


Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) enjoy greater freedom and flexibility in their operations compared to governmental entities, and they rely heavily on funding from various sources, such as donations, grants, and partnerships with the private sector.

NGOs vary in size and scope; some operate locally within a specific country, while others work internationally and carry out developmental activities in multiple countries. Examples of well-known international NGOs include the Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders, and UNICEF, among others.

NGOs play a crucial role in promoting sustainable development, achieving social change and human rights, and working to fill the gaps that governments may leave in meeting the needs of individuals and communities.


What Are the Characteristics of Non-governmental Organizations?


Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are private institutions characterized by their independence from the government, with a strong focus on achieving specific social, environmental, cultural, or economic goals. These organizations come in various sizes and objectives and are funded through various sources, making them important actors in civil society.

   1. Independence

Non-governmental organizations operate independently of the government, a feature that comes from being private initiatives that arise among community members away from the influence of the state or governmental structure, although some may receive financial support from governments.

  2. Non-profit

These organizations aim to serve the community and not to make profits; the funds collected are reinvested in the organization's projects and activities, with a focus on achieving moral and ethical objectives, such as preserving human dignity.

   3. Volunteering

Volunteer work forms the backbone of many non-governmental organizations, encouraging effective community participation in their initiatives.

   4. Focus on Specific Issues

NGOs operate within a specific range of issues, allowing them to have a tangible impact in areas such as human rights, the environment, public health, and education.

   5. International and Local Work

These organizations can operate at local or international levels, reflecting their work's scope and diverse impact.

   6. Flexibility and Responsiveness

Thanks to their less bureaucratic organizational structures and closeness to the community, NGOs can respond quickly to crises and changing needs.

   7. Advocacy and Policy Influence

They advocate for political or social changes and influence public policies to support specific issues.

   8. Transparency and Accountability

NGOs operate transparently, committed to being accountable to their donors and the public they serve.


In addition to these characteristics, non-governmental organizations are distinguished by the following:

  • Flexibility

NGOs have a high capacity to adapt to changes and new challenges, allowing them to implement their projects effectively and efficiently.

  • Ability to Work Directly and Close to Beneficiaries

These organizations can directly and effectively reach targeted communities, enhancing their impact and enabling them to provide necessary support directly.

  • Sensitivity Towards the Social and Cultural Characteristics of Target Groups

NGOs consider their communities' cultural and social context, ensuring the effectiveness of the initiatives and programs implemented.

  • Expertise and Experience in Development and Relief Areas

These organizations possess extensive expertise and long-standing experience in their fields of work, enabling them to offer innovative and effective solutions to various challenges.

  • Creativity in Addressing Development Issues

NGOs stand out in their ability to present innovative and creative solutions to development issues, contributing to sustainable and effective outcomes.

  • Active Participation in Local Projects

NGOs work closely with local communities, participating in designing and implementing projects that directly meet their needs.

  • Focus on Independence

NGOs maintain their independence from governmental and commercial entities, allowing them to operate according to their principles and values.

  • The Economy in Resource Use

These organizations strive to maximize the use of available resources, whether material or human, to ensure sustainability and effectiveness in their work.

These characteristics reflect the commitment of non-governmental organizations to positively impact the communities they operate within, facing global challenges with innovative and effective solutions.


NGOs In Jordan


In Jordan, many non-governmental organizations (NGOs) operate in various fields, such as social and economic development, health, education, human rights, the environment, and refugee support. These organizations are crucial in addressing societal issues and providing services to the neediest groups.

Tkyiet Um Ali is one of those organizations, that aims to fight hunger and poverty in Jordan by providing food support to families in need.

Considering the crucial role of NGOs in promoting social and economic development and protecting the environment, individuals can contribute directly and effectively to these efforts by participating in volunteer programs. Tkiyet Um Ali offers outstanding volunteering opportunities that positively impact the lives of those in need. Tkiyet Um Ali invites those interested in contributing to building a better community to join its volunteer programs, where every individual can make a real difference in society.

For more information on how to participate in these volunteer programs and support families in need, please visit Tkiyet Um Ali's website: Tkiyet Um Ali's Volunteer Programs.

We encourage everyone to seize this opportunity to contribute to community development and humanitarian efforts, helping shape a sustainable and fair future for all.