Individual donor base most critical for NGOs: Survey

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A detailed online survey conducted by Samhita reveals that individual donations are the most critical source of funds for Indian NGOs.

This survey was conducted to understand the fundraising practices of Indian NGOs. We hope that the results will help NGOs customize their activities based on popular practices.

Respondents to the survey consisted of NGOs across the length and breadth of the country.

Location of NGOs that took the surveyIndicative location of survey respondents

The survey revealed that 75.7% of the NGOs raised the majority of their funds from Indian donors while 24.3% NGOs are primarily supported by international donors.

Most of the funds that NGOs raise come from individual donors. For example, 18.9% NGOs raise more than 75% of their funds from individual donors, while a negligible percentage rely on corporates for majority of their funding. Government sources account for less than 5% of total funds raised for 56.8% NGOs. Of the total funds that 62.2% NGOs receive, less than 5% comes from corporate donors.


Since corporate and foundation grants focus primarily on projects, individual donations become more reliable source of funding, particularly for organizational needs. NGOs that do not have corporate and government connections also tend to rely on the support of individuals for funding that comes in smaller denominations, but, with easier terms. In such cases, building and managing an extensive database of individual donors becomes extremely critical for sustainable fundraising. Samhita’s donor tools are designed to help NGOs reach out to and raise funds from new donors. Our project management tools will also help NGOs provide regular feedback and updates to their supporters.

Watch out for this space for findings on financial support offered by foundations, corporates and the Government.


Unknown said...

What is the number of organizations that participated in this survey. Is it mentioned somewhere. Just wanted to check if respondents number is representative enough or not.

Otherwise , this report has been informative.

Peter Rex Charly said...

This gives fairly good result...but majority of our countrymen believe otherwise (that NGOs depend on foreign funds/ Government grants...

While the foreign funds are very scarce nowadays, government grants are normally enjoy(?)ed by the so called GONGOs (Government NGOs)

New Life

Samhita said...

Thanks Ramachandra!

The survey covers 330 NGOs spread across the country and from different sectors.

Samhita said...

Thanks Peter!

There is a considerable disconnect between social organizations and the community. We need to bridge this gap to change perceptions in the right direction.

In our bid to do so we are creating a collaborative social platform - Samhita (

Umashankar said...

Thanks a lot for this important information. We can take the example of CRY which generate more than 60% of its funding from India itself. We need to find out the avenues which could sustain the grassroots level NGOs like us.


Orissa, India
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