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Non-Governmental Organizations and Rural Poverty Alleviation

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Overview

There has been considerable interest in recent years in the abil ty of non-governmental organizations to work with the rural poor in developing countries in order to improve their quality of life and economic status through the provision of credit, skills training, and other inputs for income-generation programmes. This book brings together the results of sixteen evaluations in four countries (Bangladesh, India, Uganda and Zimbabwe) to provide a detailed assessment of the contribution that NGOs make to rural poverty alleviation. The results indicate that NGO projects are successful when they build in a high degree of participation, when the staff are committed to the goals of the project, and when they are managed by strong and competent leaders. Many of the projects studied contributed to increases in income and welfare. Programmes designed to provide economic benefits also proved effective in improving the social status of the poor. However, not all projects were successful, contrary to received wisdom about the efficacy of NGO interventions. Many failed to reach the very poorest, most were costly to implement, and few of the projects demonstrated an ability to continue once external funding was withdrawn. These findings provide strong support for viewing NGOs as a mechanism for helping to reduce rural poverty, but also demonstrate that many of the interventions are isolated or one-off. The impact of NGOs could be heightened by increasing the size of the intervention, encouraging greater cooperation among NGOs, and by fostering closer co-operation with governments.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780198233305
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 11/28/1995
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.38 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.93 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword
Acknowledgements
List of Abbreviations
1 Introduction 1
Pt. I Assessing the Success of NGOs 7
2 Rural Poverty and Approaches to Poverty Alleviation 9
3 The Characteristics of NGOs: Is There a Comparative Advantage? 26
4 Evaluating NGO Performance 44
5 The Impact of NGO Poverty-Alleviation Projects: Overview of the Results of the Case-Studies 59
6 NGOs and Poverty Alleviation: Some Policy Implications 83
Pt. II Case-studies from Four Developing Countries 99
7 Bangladesh 101
8 India 138
9 Uganda 191
10 Zimbabwe 238
Refrences 285
Glossary 293
Index 295
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