LOCAL NGO SUSTAINABILITY.
‘’The term sustainability refers to the capacity to be supported, sustained as well as being upheld. It in deeper terms refers to that specific quality of keeping away from any harm to the environment for instance depleting of natural resources for any given project’’
In effect, ‘’sustainability has gained significant popularity in policy-oriented research, business development and social sector over the last few decades. It is the most sorted feature to ensure success to any organizations’’. Sustainability, is a key to any management as it determines the future of the business. ‘’A word frequently used across several disciplines, has become part of our everyday lexis’’.
‘’Looking at the perspective of donors and NGOs, sustainability of a project simply implies the continuation of project activities and sustenance of project outcomes after the initial/primary grant expires. Most donors are concerned about sustainability aspect of a project and often fund projects which have a well-defined sustainability plan in place. It is a challenge for NGOs to ensure a steady flow of funds for executing their projects and programs. Integrating sustainability principles in their ongoing projects can be an effective way to ensure long term impact’’.
Looking at sustainability from a local NGO point of view, it means continuing to perform and deliver organization’s activities to the primary target group after the funding for executing the project from a donor terminates. In other words, sustainability is to maintain and continue your efforts after the funding is over.
As a local NGO, we should always be thinking about how to accomplish our mission despite having funding for executing projects from donors or not. Our main focus should be the target group and the performance of our institution. We must have a vision of our organization when the donors funding is over, we must draft a realistic sustainability plan to finance our activities by ourselves so that we can maintain a steady flow of funds. Finally, we must think about how to become autonomous in order to provide to the well-being of our staff and maintain our work in progress with the target group.
Making institutional sustainability a main priority for a local NGO is to give ourselves an opportunity to become autonomous, to develop a long-term plan that is able to manage the NGO staff in a way that maximizes each individual’s potential, meets their own expectations and thus supports their professional development.
Developing sustainable project funded by international donors is good for locals NGOs credibility, but it’s does not make a local NGO sustainable. In my point of view, what should make a local NGO sustainable is its capacity to perform their work and support their staff without any funds coming from donors. Thus, NGOs must put their work emphasis an organization management, funding, funding management and innovation.
Brice Mebieb, ORGANIZATIONAL DEVELOPMENT COUNSELOR, OXFAM