Financing Local Non-Governmental Organisations in Ghana: Issues and Challenges

Thumbnail Image
October, 2010
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Local Non-governmental Organisations (NGOs) play a vital role in the socio-economic development of Ghana. They complement government’s efforts in providing sustainable development by filling development gaps where government is short. Despite these important roles local NGOs play in the development process they are faced with a number of challenges which raises concern about their sustainability. This study identifies and discusses some key issues and challenges in financing local NGOs in Ghana. The analysis first reviews the sources of funds for local NGOs by focusing on both external and internal sources. The study then discusses the methods local NGOs use to mobilize funds for their operations. Three methods were identified and they included proposal writing, partnership and social enterprise. The study sought to determine how local NGOs in Ghana finance their operations. A survey research approach was adopted to examine the local NGOs financing and issues and challenges that confront them. With a combination of purposive and simple random sampling, and 10 percent margin of error, 43 out of 76 local NGOs in Brong Ahafo Region were sampled for the survey. Issues such as governance and management of local NGOs, staff composition, sources of funding, conditions attached to funding sources, relationship between local NGOs capacities and funding as well as the utilization of local NGO funds were discussed in this regard. Others are the challenges local NGOs faces and the methods used to mobilise funds. The study revealed that local NGOs obtained their funding mostly from INGOs, governments through their embassies and agencies such Ghana AIDS Commission External funding accounted for 83 percent of local NGOs funding whilst internal funding accounted for 17 percent. The study also revealed that external funding to local NGOs is mostly available for small period of time like one year to 18 months and it has been reducing over the past five years. This limits the scale of local NGOs interventions. Local NGOs have not also been able to tap funding from local philanthropic and corporate bodies for their operations. It is thus recommended that local NGOs diversify their funding bases, approach local corporate bodies and philanthropist for funding support. It is also recommended prudent and sound organisational management of local NGOs. Giving the expected roles local NGOs have to play in the development of the less privileged communities, all other players in the development process must collectively re-examine their contributions towards the financing of local NGOs. Local NGOs on their part, should be able to assess factors that hinder them from enjoying public and corporate support and ensure effective collaboration between them and the public.
A thesis submitted to the Department of Planning, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Development Policy and Planning.