Why NOT to use overhead ratios as a way to compare NGOs

29/03/2012 at 2:16 pm 3 comments

We in Dóchas are very keen to promote Good NGOs, and to discourage funders to keep supporting Bad NGOs.

And in doing so, we obviously need to have clear standards of what a “Good NGO” is. And that is not easy. But we are working on that!

For starters, have a look at these resources:

But the list is longer than this. Please bear with us while we develop it further.

In the mean time, however, we thought that it would be helpful if we tell you how NOT to judge an NGO.

One of the most widely used criteria to assess NGOs is their overheads ratio: the percentage of the organisation’s income that is used on administration, salaries and other “overhead” costs.

We hope that, when you have read the articles below, you will agree: OVERHEAD COSTS ARE NOT A GOOD WAY TO JUDGE THE QUALITY OF A NOT-FOR-PROFIT ORGANISATION.

The Overheads Myth

Have a look for yourself:

Also have a look at this article, called “The Non-Profit Starvation Cycle

And finally, this article: Might it be time to stop talking about NGO administration costs?

What do YOU think?

How can ordinary people know which NGO is best?

Please let us have your views by leaving a comment below.

;

Entry filed under: NGOs. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

How do we communicate global poverty? Might it be time to stop talking about NGO Administration Costs?

3 Comments Add your own

  • […] Why NOT to use overheads ratios as a way to compare NGOs (March 2010) […]

    Reply
  • 2. Robbie Gilligan  |  06/01/2014 at 1:32 pm

    It depends on the context to some extent. But here are a few suggestions: accountability to service users; appointing people with service user experience to Boards; external review processes; demonstrating compliance with international conventions, best practice models etc

    Reply
  • 3. Bakoena Chele  |  23/01/2014 at 11:01 am

    Good NGOs are those that rate high in the folowing: Governance; Management Practices; Human Resource Management; Financial Resource Management; External Relations; And in Sustainability!

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Trackback this post  |  Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 210 other followers

Archives

Dóchas on Twitter

The World's Best News - images

The world's fastest growing economies:

Half of the countries in this list of 13 booming economies are in Africa: 
http://worldsbestnews.tumblr.com/post/125151379280/the-13-fastest-growing-economies-in-the-world #positivenews The first #malaria vaccine has received the green light from European regulators, opening the door for vaccination campaigns for infants in #Africa.

Malaria is a disease of poverty. It affects poor people disproportionately, and it fuels poverty, as it slows economic growth and worsens other disease burdens, particular HIV and Aids.

But there is good news: The number of malaria deaths has almost halved since 2002, and now a new malaria vaccine has been approved, which should help protect very young #children against the disease.

Read this article: http://www.scidev.net/global/malaria/news/malaria-vaccine-green-light-mosquirix.html?utm_content=buffer1ea54&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Also read: http://www.thejournal.ie/readme/malaria-treatment-vaccine-research-1428826-Apr2014/ On September 17th hundreds of volunteers around the country will mobilise to spread the positive news of development!

They will be handing out "the World's Best News newspaper" and joining in other activities nationwide. 
The EYD team and the Dóchas membership are working hard to produce this year's World's Best News newspaper which will be published in September. 
Details of the activities on September 17th will follow shortly. 
We would love to have you on board!

If you would like to be involved in the distribution/ activities on the day please write to the EYD team at eyd@dochas.ie Good news: far fewer people are now hurt by land mines and old unexploded ammunition.

Thanks to an international ban on mines, and intensive mine clearing, it’s now possible for more people in previous conflict zones to stand on their own legs.

Read more here: bit.ly/1T1iFpN Good news! 
Between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of the global population using an improved drinking water source has increased from 76 per cent to 91 per cent, surpassing the MDG target, which was met in 2010.

Of the 2.6 billion people who have gained access since 1990, 1.9 billion use a piped drinking water supply on premises. The world has reason to celebrate.

This new #UN report shows that the world has good reason to celebrate the huge progress in the fight against #poverty, #hunger and #disease.

From the report: "At the beginning of the new millennium, world leaders gathered at the United Nations to shape a broad vision to fight poverty in its many dimensions. That vision, which was translated into eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), has remained the overarching development framework for the world for the past 15 years.

As we reach the end of the MDG period, the world community has reason to celebrate. Thanks to concerted global, regional, national and local efforts, the MDGs have saved the lives of millions and improved conditions for many more.

The data and analysis presented in this report prove that, with targeted interventions, sound strategies, adequate resources and political will, even the poorest countries can make dramatic and
unprecedented progress. The report also acknowledges uneven achievements and shortfalls in many areas. The work is not complete, and it must continue in the new development era.” http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/2015_MDG_Report/pdf/MDG%202015%20rev%20(July%201).pdf How often have you heard people say there isn't enough food in the world?

Not true. There is enough food to feed everyone, and there is room to grow more! 
Just read how this project in Madagascar is helping smallholder farmers achieve bigger harvests.

http://bit.ly/1IV0g6H 
Photo: A horizontal view of the rice plantations near Tsivory village, #Madagascar. ©IFAD/Rindra Ramasomanana Good news for the weekend:

#Cuba has become the first country in the world stop HIV transmission from mother to child. "Cuba's success demonstrates that universal access and universal #health coverage are feasible and indeed are the key to success, even against challenges as daunting as #HIV." http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/07/01/us-cuba-health-iduskcn0pa2b520150701?utm_campaign=trueAnthem%3A+Trending+Content&utm_content=5593757e04d3013e4e000001&utm_medium=trueAnthem&utm_source=facebook

Photo: A nurse hands out a red ribbon to a woman, to mark World Aids Day, at the entrance of Emilio Ribas Hospital, in Sao Paulo December 1, 2014. 
REUTERS/NACHO DOCE Happy International #Yoga Day!

Have a look at some of these pictures of African yoga: - http://ireland.ashoka.org/yoga-africa-transforming-young-minds-hearts-and-livelihoods
- http://www.africayogaproject.org/
- http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/inpictures/2014/04/pictures-yoga-bends-trends-kenya-20144494348396640.html 
Photo: Susan Njeri practices the Wheel Pose on the railway line at the entrance of #Kibera "This will be the largest privately-owned #solar power plant in Africa." http://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/worldBusiness/artikel.php?ID=361671&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=post&utm_term=solar+plant+in+ghana+that&utm_campaign=Climate&__surl__=IgD8H&__ots__=1434360286047&__step__=1

#ghana #solar #renewables India’s first public skate park.

Rumbling trucks, roaming cows and honking tuk-tuks make skateboarding a risky pastime on the often potholed streets of India. So last year, a group of professional skateboarders joined together with a group of local volunteers to build #India’s first public #skate park. 
Here, street kids and young professionals alike can take a break and skate for free after a hard day’s work. As an added bonus the young skaters also receive free English lessons.

Read more about ‘the best skatepark in Asia’ here: bit.ly/1BYel0D

Visitors Map

Map

Dóchas Photos

1506_77

1506_76

More Photos

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 210 other followers

%d bloggers like this: