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On Aid Effectiveness & Foreign Assistance Reform

Organizational Development & Fundraising for Community-Based Organizations

Recommended Reading

Documentaries on Global Issues

Organizations & Networks

On Aid Effectiveness & Foreign Assistance Reform

Accountable Now – Accountable Now is a cross-sector platform of globally acting civil society organisations (CSOs). Together we strive to be transparent, responsive to stakeholders and focused on delivering impact.

Active Learning Network for Accountability and Performance in Humanitarian Action (ALNAP) – ALNAP is a unique system-wide network dedicated to improving humanitarian performance through increased learning and accountability.

AidData –AidData tracks $40 trillion in funding for development. Now anyone can assess who is funding what, where and to what effect. Donors and governments can maximize the impact of their investments. Citizens can hold their leaders to account for results.

AidFlows – AidFlows visualizes how much development aid is provided and received around the world. Users can select individual donors (providing the aid) and beneficiaries (receiving the aid) to track the sources and uses of aid funding.

CDA: Accountability and Feedback Loops – CDA Collaborative Learning Projects (CDA) is a non-profit organization committed to improving the effectiveness of those who work to provide humanitarian assistance, engage in peace practice, support sustainable development, and conduct corporate operations in a socially responsible manner.

CHSAlliance – The CHS Alliance improves the effectiveness and impact of assistance to crisis-affected and vulnerable people, by working with humanitarian and development actors on quality, accountability and people management initiatives.

Civil Society Voices for Better Aid – BetterAid unites over 700 development organisations from civil society, and has been working on development cooperation and challenging the aid effectiveness agenda since January 2007.

COADY International Institute at St. Francis Xavier University – The Coady International Institute ignites leadership that inspires collaborative effort to address challenges, discover opportunities and create sustainable development at the community level.

Community Development Resource Association – The Community Development Resource Association is a non-governmental African organisational advancing conscious and continuous learning about development processes and art of intervention.

Dalia Association‘s An Appeal by Palestinian Civil Society to the International Community to Respect Our Right to Self Determination in the Aid System (April 2011) – “As Palestinians, We Have the Right to Control Our Own Development Resources”

DARA – Founded in 2003 by Silvia Hidalgo, DARA is an independent non-profit organisation committed to improving the quality and effectiveness of humanitarian action for vulnerable populations affected by armed conflict and natural disasters.

Development Gateway – An international nonprofit delivering technology and information solutions for international development.

Development Initiatives – Development Initiatives (DI) is an independent international development organisation that focuses on the role of data in driving poverty eradication and sustainable development.

Global Humanitarian Assistance – The Global Humanitarian Assistance (GHA) programme provides objective, independent, rigorous data and analysis on humanitarian financing and related aid flows.

Dóchas – Dóchas is the Irish Association of Non-Governmental Development Organisations. It is a meeting place and a leading voice for organisations that want Ireland to be a world leader in efforts to bring about global justice.

elrha – “Improving humanitarian outcomes through partnership, research and innovation”

eurodad –Eurodad (the European Network on Debt and Development) is a network of 47 civil society organisations (CSOs) from 20 European countries, which works for transformative yet specific changes to global and European policies, institutions, rules and structures to ensure a democratically controlled, environmentally sustainable financial and economic system that works to eradicate poverty and ensure human rights for all.

Governance of Climate Change Finance – UNDP Asia-Pacific Regional Center supports countries in Asia-Pacific in many development agenda including Climate Change Finance and development Effectiveness with leadership from governments and collaboration from CSOs, development partners across the region.

Ideas For Development – Blog coordinated by the Agence Française de Développement

Institute of Development Studies – The Institute of Development Studies (IDS) is a leading global institution for development research, teaching and learning, and impact and communications, based at the University of Sussex.

InterAction: Accountability & Learning – InterAction is an alliance organization in Washington, D.C. of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). Our 180-plus members work around the world.

International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) – IATI is a voluntary, multi-stakeholder initiative that seeks to improve the transparency of aid, development, and humanitarian resources in order to increase their effectiveness in tackling poverty.

International Budget Partnership (IBP)’s Open Budgets Blog – The Open Budgets Blog features content related to transparency, participation, and accountability in government budgeting; civil society budget analysis and advocacy; and public finance management.

International Council of Voluntary Agencies: Humanitarian Financing – ICVA is a platform for increased collaboration and coordination between NGOs and other humanitarian actors, which is crucial to improving the lives of communities affected by humanitarian crises.

Local First – Local First is an approach to international development that prioritises the views and leadership of people and organisations in the countries affected, over those of outsiders from the international community.

Managing for Development Results – Managing for development results (MfDR) is a management strategy that focuses on using performance information to improve decision-making.

Mango – We are Mango, the only NGO focused on strengthening the financial management and accountability of other NGOs around the world.

NEPAD Agency: Africa Platform for Development Effectiveness – The Africa Platform on Development Effectiveness brings consultation, coordination and a common voice to Africa’s development perspectives, strategies and policies focusing on capacity development, aid effectiveness and south-south cooperation.

OECD: The Busan Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation – The Busan Partnership agreement sets out principles, commitments and actions that offer a foundation for effective co-operation in support of international development.

OECD: The Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness (2005) and the Accra Agenda for Action (2008)

Overseas Development Institute (ODI) – The Overseas Development Institute (ODI) is the UK’s leading independent think tank on international development and humanitarian issues.

Oxfam America: Making Aid Work – Ensure US poverty-reducing aid is led and designed by the people who need it most.

Oxfam International: Aid Effectiveness – Two big issues seriously affect poor countries’ chances of beating poverty. One is the amount of aid they get. The other is the amount of debt they repay.

Partnership Matters – is a new website for anyone who is interested in sharing resources and experiences with a view to improving Partnership Practice in International Development work.

Publish What You Fund – Publish What You Fund is a not-for-profit organisation that campaigns for aid transparency – more and better information about aid.

Tall Orders – Our goal is to identify and discuss effective models and innovative approaches in international aid and development that go beyond good intentions to address the needs of the world’s poor.

The Big Push Forward –We are an informal international network of practitioners seeking constructive ways to advance conceptually and methodologically development aid’s support of a fairer world, beyond the narrow bureaucratic protocols that assume guaranteed predictable outcomes.

The Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) – ICAI scrutinises official UK aid spending for international development. We are independent of government and report to the International Development Committee of the UK Parliament.

The Reality of Aid – The Reality of Aid Network (RoA) is the only major North/South international non-governmental initiative focusing exclusively on analysis and lobbying for poverty eradication policies and practices in the international aid regime.

The South-South Opportunity – Welcome to the growing community of South-South practitioners. This platform offers a space to come together and exchange knowledge, discuss, learn and connect around South-South cooperation and knowledge exchanges.

The Sphere Project – The Sphere Project is a voluntary initiative that brings a wide range of humanitarian agencies together around a common aim – to improve the quality of humanitarian assistance and the accountability of humanitarian actors to their constituents, donors and affected populations.

Zunia’s group on Aid Effectiveness – A knowledge exchange platform powered by Development Gateway


Organizational Development & Fundraising for Community-Based Organizations

Community and Organizational Development Resources for Community-Based Organizations 

Bond Resources – The most useful tools, reports, books, how-to-guides, videos, briefings, presentations and websites for people working in international development.

Development Impact & You (DIY) – This is a toolkit on how to invent, adopt or adapt ideas that can deliver better results. It’s quick to use, simple to apply, and designed to help busy people working in development.

Dochas (The Irish Association of Non-Governmental Development Organizations): Guidelines on Partnerships with Southern CSOs (April 2013)

Education & Training Unit (ETU): Community Organizers Toolbox – This site contains simple guides on a wide range of skills that are useful for community organisers. It will help you to become a more effective activist in your community and to build efficient and democratic organisations.

Firelight Newsflash – Monthly, Firelight staff share timely resources and news with African communities in a weekly “Newsflash” e-mail. These bulletins include information on relevant resources, publications, funding opportunities, donor profiles, upcoming events and conferences, tips to enhance programming, and news of grassroot groups’ achievements.

“The Art of Leadership and Management on the Ground – A Guide for Leaders and Managers to Build Sustainable Organizations” – A practical guide for leaders and managers to build sustainable organisations to promote social change

frog: The Collective Action Toolkit – The Collective Action Toolkit puts design-thinking tools into the hands of local change agents to transform communities

GlobalGiving’s Tools + Training Blog

“Do Nothing About Me Without Me: An Action Guide for Engaging Stakeholders” – This publication, from GEO and Interaction Institute for Social Change, offers an overview of how grantmakers are reaching out to grantees, community members and other partners for smarter grantmaking.

“Changing Minds: A Guide to Facilitated Participatory Planning” – This book draws on the work of thinkers and doers throughout the world who have grappled with the challenge of planning complex institutions, especially health systems and development projects.

Learning for Sustainability – The Learning for Sustainability (LfS) site provides a reference guide to on-line resources for those working to support social learning and constructive action.

Mango’s Practical Financial Management for NGOs Training Manual – Welcome to Mango’s free financial management resources for NGOs. The Guide and Top Tips provide an extensive and rich collection of materials and tools written in plain language and based on a real understanding of what NGOs do.

“Stories Worth Telling” – A comprehensive set of research and best practices designed to build storytelling capacity among small nonprofits

Mob Lab (Mobilization Lab for Greenpeace and its allies) – The Mobilisation Lab at Greenpeace is powered by a growing global network of staff, volunteers, and allies dedicated to people-powered campaigning.

NetSquared Community Organizers Handbook – In this space you’ll find pages that cover all aspects of local community organizing. Pages include overviews, programmatic details related to NetSquared Local, case studies from organizers in the field, and available resources to help you be successful.

NGO Management School Switzerland – NGO Management School is a department within NGO Management Association and provides tailored in-house training for your organisation, and for individual public open courses and individual training in a wide range of management topics.

Partnership Matters: A Reflective Guide – Partnership Matters: A Reflective Guide is intended to help you to reflect on the way in which you and your organisation approach working in partnership.

Pathfinder International Publication Series: “Straight to the Point: Capacity Building Tools” – Taking into consideration implementers limited time and human and financial resources, the tools in Pathfinder’s “Straight to the Point” Series provide clear, concise guidance on a variety of issues related to program design, implementation, and evaluation.

“Strengthening Your Organisation” publication from HelpAge International (No longer available on their website, but if you email me, I can share it.)

The Barefoot Guide to Working with Organizations and Social Change – Four Guides, focusing on different spheres of social change practice, with the participation of over 240 practitioners from all continents.

The Constellation’s Online Resources – Includes SALT Methodology and Blended Learning Online Course on unleashing local ownership and strengths

The NGO Cafe – Realizing the growing importance and voice of NGOs in development in general, the NGO Café was set up as a platform for NGOs to discuss, debate and disseminate information on their work, strategies and results.

tools4dev – tools4dev  provides templates, reviews and how-to guides for international development and aid professionals.

Training for Transformation: A Handbook for Community Workers, Books 1-3. Zimbabwe: Mambo Press. (Not available online but can be ordered from Amazon.)

University of Kansas’ Work Group for Community Health and Development: Community Tool Box  – Dive in to find help assessing community needs and resources, addressing social determinants of health, engaging stakeholders, action planning, building leadership, improving cultural competency, planning an evaluation, and sustaining your efforts over time.

Fundraising Resources for Community-Based Organizations

CABSA: Funding and Fundraising Resources – CABSA guides and supports Christian communities to become HIV competent, through advocacy, providing information, mobilising and networking.

CIVICUS Toolkit: Developing a Financing Strategy – This toolkit will help you to develop a process for ensuring the financial sustainability of your organisation.

Core Costs Funding Strategies, from BOND’s Guidance Notes Series – “Every NGO should have plans for the future, but a core funding strategy is probably the most essential plan. An organisation can only look ahead with confidence when the fundamental core costs are securely funded.”

Funding for Africa – A hub for Resource Mobilization, Fundraising and Organisational Development

fundsforNGOs – FundsforNGOs a social enterprise and online initiative with the goal of increasing the sustainability of NGOs across the world. We accomplish this by providing online resources for NGOs to increase their awareness and access to donors, resources, and skills.

Global Development Research Center (GDRC) Special Feature: NGO Fund Raising Strategies – This NGO Cafe feature was created to collate current thinking and resources on the topic. These are strategies for fund raising in general, and the Cafe itself does not disburse funds to NGOs.

Global Fund for Women: Fundraising for Change – A Practical Guide for Women’s Organizations – Getting money and attention to where it’s most needed to power the women’s movement requires support from donor activists and women’s rights organizations globally. With this in mind, Global Fund for Women wants to help women’s rights organizations build strong, effective fundraising skills.

GlobalGiving – GlobalGiving is the first and largest global crowdfunding community that connects nonprofits, donors, and companies in nearly every country around the world. We make it possible for nonprofits from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe (and hundreds of places in between) to access the tools, training, and support they need to be more effective and make our world a better place.

GlobalGiving UK – We believe that grassroots nonprofit organisations are best placed to create sustainable community initiatives and achieve positive long-term social impact. We support them by connecting them to the resources they need to create change: access to our online fundraising platform, access to learning opportunities to build skills and knowledge, access to support through a growing network of volunteers and corporate partners.

idealware: Fundraising Archives – Helping nonprofits make smart technology decisions. Find original research, insights, and assessment tools to help you solve your biggest tech challenges.

International HIV/AIDS Alliance: Raising funds and mobilising resources for HIV/AIDS work – This toolkit and training resource aims to help NGOs/CBOs plan and carry out resource mobilisation strategically and systematically, to obtain maximum returns for the least effort, while remaining true to their mission.

Basic Fund-Raising for Small NGOs/Civil Society in the Developing World – A free resource for nonprofit organizations, NGOs, civil society organizations, public sector organizations, and other mission-based agencies

NGO Pulse: Civil Society: Fundraising – We exist for the purpose of facilitating access, sharing information, building capacity, raising awareness, enhancing reach and impact, and linking people and organisations through the use of ICTs in Southern Africa.

SOFII (The Showcase of Funding Innovation and Inspiration) – SOFII has been created by fundraisers for fundraisers. It is an easily accessible free archive of the best fundraising creativity and innovation from around the world.

The Guardian Global development professionals network: “Funding 101: the art of giving and receiving grants” – Funding development programmes can be a tricky business. Learn how to give, as well as, seek and secure grants.

The Resource Alliance: Resource Library – The Resource Alliance inspires sharing and collaboration to create powerful change in the social impact sector.

TILZ (Tearfund International Learning Zone) Fundraising Publication – This book shows how to develop a fundraising strategy and contains ideas to help organisations diversify their funding base. (Chapter 4 on characteristics of different funding sources is really useful.)

Wikifund: The Fundraiser’s Encyclopedia – Wikifund, developed by the International Fundraising Consultancy is the place for insight in to everything to do with Fundraising.

Women Thrive Alliance: Fundraising Guide for Women’s Community-based Organizations – Our team of professional fundraisers developed this guide to help women’s groups better understand the world of grantseeking and build their skills to raise money for their desired causes and projects.

World Bank: Resource Mobilization Handout – This brief is one in a series of tips for civil society organizations written from a funder’s perspective. It is intended to stimulate inquiry, rather than to provide rigid instructions.

Recommended Reading

Bearman, J. (2008). Drowning in Paperwork, Distracted from Purpose: Challenges and Opportunities in Grant Application and Reporting. Retrieved October 28, 2016 from How Grants Get Made (GMN) Web Site.

Birdsall, K. and K. Kelly, et al. (2007). Pioneers, Partners, Providers: The Dynamics of Civil Society and AIDS Funding in Southern Africa. Braamfontein, South Africa: OSISA and CADRE. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from SARPN Web Site.

Community Development Resource Association. (2007). Dreaming reality: The future in retrospect. Cape Town: CDRA.

Donohue, J. & Mwewa, L. (2006). Community action and the test of time: Learning from community experiences and perceptions (Case studies of mobilization and capacity building to benefit vulnerable children in Malawi and Zambia). Washington, DC: USAID Displaced Children and Orphans Fund. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from CRIN Web Site.

Eade, D. (1997). Capacity Building: An Approach to People-Centered Development. U.K.: Oxfam. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from Oxfam’s Policy & Practice Web Site.

Foster, G. (2005). Bottlenecks and drip-feeds: Channelling resources to communities responding to orphans and vulnerable children in southern Africa. London: Save the Children. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from Save the Children Web Site.

Gubbels, P. and C. Koss. (2000). From the Roots Up: Strengthening Organizational Capacity through Guided Self-Assessment. Oklahoma City: World Neighbors. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from Handicap International.

Hawken. P. (2007). Blessed Unrest: How the Largest Movement in the World Came into Being and Why No One Saw It Coming. New York: Viking Press. Retrieved from Blessed Unrest Web Site.

Hope, A. and S. Timmel (1984). Training for Transformation: A Handbook for Community Workers, Books 1-3. Zimbabwe: Mambo Press.

Kaplan, A. (1996). The Development Practitioners Handbook. Cape Town: Pluto Press.

Keystone. (2006). Survey results: Downward accountability to ‘beneficiaries’: NGO and donor perspectives. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from La Sociedad Civil en Linea website.

Keystone. (2011). The INGO Partner Survey 2010. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from Keystone Web Site.

  • A survey of over 1,000 local overseas partners on behalf of 25 international NGOs. The key finding was that local organisations do not want to be treated as sub-contractors of international agencies. They want help to become independent and influential organisations in their own right.

Kretzmann, J. and J. McKnight. (1993). Building Communities from the Inside Out: A Path Toward Finding and Mobilizing a Community’s Assets. Chicago: ACTA Publications.

Manji, F. and A. Naidoo. (2005). Community based organizations: The emerging force within the third sector – strengthening the human rights capacity of CBOs: A survey of 9 southern African countries. Durban: Fahamu. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from Fahamu Web Site.

Palmer, P. (2004). A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Towards an Undivided Life. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

The Barefoot Collective. (2009). The Barefoot Guide to Working with Organizations and Social Change. Cape Town: Community Development Resource Association. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from The Barefoot Collective Web Site.

Wesley, F., B. Zimmerman, and M. Q. Patton. (2006). Getting to Maybe: How the World is Changed. Random House Canada.

Wilkinson-Maposa, S. & Fowler, A. (2009). The poor philanthropist I-IV: How and why the poor help each other. Cape Town: Southern Africa-United States Center for Leadership and Public Values. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy Web Site.

Yachkaschi, S. (2008). Towards the development of an appropriate organisational development approach for optimising the capacity building of community-based organisations (CBOs): A case study of three CBOs in the Western Cape. Doctoral dissertation, University of Stellenbosch, South Africa.


Documentaries on Global Issues

LinkTV – Television Without Borders

PBS’ Good Fortune – A provocative exploration of how massive international efforts to alleviate poverty in Africa may be undermining the very communities they aim to benefit.


Organizations & Networks

African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF) Blog – The African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF) is a grantmaking foundation that supports local, national and regional women’s organisations working towards the empowerment of African women and the promotion and realisation of their rights.

Center for Global Development – We work to change the policies and practices of rich countries and powerful institutions to reduce global poverty and inequality.

Center for International Humanitarian Cooperation (CIHC) – The Center for International Humanitarian Cooperation (CIHC) was founded in 1992 to promote healing and peace in countries shattered by natural disasters, armed conflicts, and ethnic violence.

CIVICUS – We exist to strengthen civil society and citizen action around the world.

Community Development Resource Association (CDRA) – The Community Development Resource Association is a non-governmental African organisational advancing conscious and continuous learning about development processes and art of intervention.

Devex: News – The media platform for the global development community. The social enterprise working to make the $200 billion aid and development industry do more good for more people. The largest provider of recruiting and business development services for global development.

Fahamu: Networks for Social Justice – Fahamu has a vision of the world where people organise to emancipate themselves from all forms of oppression, recognise their social responsibilities, respect each other’s differences, and realise their full potential.

Global Fund for Community Foundations – The Global Fund for Community Foundations (GFCF) is a grassroots grantmaker working to promote and support institutions of community philanthropy around the world.

Harvard University’s The Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations: Humanitarian & Development NGOs Domain  – This blog provides a platform to help connect scholars and practitioners on a range of development and humanitarian issues.

Other Worlds: Nourishing Just Alternatives – Other Worlds is a women-driven education and movement support collaborative.

Practical Initiatives Network (PIN) – Development works better together. PIN is a free, open, worldwide network & platform for development organisations to share, learn & collaborate.

Tamarack Institute – The Tamarack Institute is a connected force for community change. We work with leaders in non-profits, governments, businesses and the community to make work of advancing positive community change easier and more effective.



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