Why establish a NGO?
Probably the two most critical questions that you will ever have to answer when you are considering starting an organisation are “why do you want to start a NGO?” and “what do you hope to achieve?”
Most NGOs are started because someone has identified a need in a community and they simply want to address that need.
Establishing a formal structure, like an organisation, provides an opportunity to
- approach donors (or government) for funding for the work that you will be doing;
- pull together volunteers who are willing to offer time and expertise – in a structured way – to support the work of the organisation;
- apply to the South African Revenue Service (SARS) for exemption from paying income tax on the funding generated to do the work of the organisation.
Vision, Mission and Objectives
It is, crucial, therefore, that you are able to communicate very clearly what the vision, mission and objectives of the NGO are. This helps people to understand why the organisation was established (i.e. what need the organisation addresses in the community) and exactly what the organisation will do/does to address this need. It is this information that often initially motivates and encourages people to want to know more about the organisation and its work.