U.S. To Launch Online Portal To Help Donate Funds Safely To Indian NGOs

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March 19, 2012

WASHINGTON, March 19 – The United States will launch an online portal that will help Indian-Americans to safely donate funds to non-government bodies in India following some reports claiming that almost half of that money is misused.

It is reported that some NGOs in India are misusing foreign aid, mostly to support high administrative costs of running organizations.

The website, initiated by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, is in its final stages before the launch in late April or early May.

March 19, 2012

WASHINGTON, March 19 – The United States will launch an online portal that will help Indian-Americans to safely donate funds to non-government bodies in India following some reports claiming that almost half of that money is misused.

It is reported that some NGOs in India are misusing foreign aid, mostly to support high administrative costs of running organizations.

The website, initiated by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, is in its final stages before the launch in late April or early May.

It is designed to make it easier for Indian Americans, in fact any Americans, to support an NGO in India, said Mitul Desai, Senior Advisor for Strategic Partnerships in the US Department of State's South & Central Asian Bureau, told Press Trust of India (PTI) in an interview.

When the portal is launched, PTI reported that the Indian Americans and others will donate at the click of a mouse, rather than going through a long bureaucratic process.

This will also help to get rid of the strain of identifying the kind of genuine NGO that would help them deliver the money and services to the targeted group.

"Right now there are a lot of people, who want to help, want to give back, but it's not as easy as it should be,"

With the help of Guide Star India, the State Department is working on the website which would put together all the genuine non-governmental organizations working in various parts of India in different field, Desai said.

All these NGOs, he said, would be certified by a third party and FCRA complaint.

Through a user-friendly interaction, the website would help individuals sitting in the US to identify NGOs working in various regions and various field of their choice to whom they can collaborate or send money for the work they want to get done, he noted.

"For now, the online portal will start with donating money online. Soon, it could be actual tangible things, services and probably a hub for education," he added.

With 3.3 million registered NGOs, India's nonprofit sector raises between US$8 billion and US$16 billion in funding every year.

According to Home Ministry statistics, foreign funding to Indian NGOs saw a 56 percent increase in the 2005-06 and 2006-07 fiscal years. In 2008, the latest available data, the total official foreign aid to India was US$2.15 billion.


Courtesy: bernama