Doing Good Well
What does (and does not) make sense in the nonprofit world

Chapter 12: International Giving

Charity Without Borders

International giving is on the rise. A key reason for this is that modern technology and the media in an increasingly globalized world have helped to educate citizens in the developed world about the plights of those living in poorer countries – including those who are victims of globalization forces.

As a consequence, international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have come into their own. They provide the vehicles through which donations, volunteers and ideas are harnessed to deal with the humanitarian, environmental and developmental issues in the developing world.

However, as NGOs go international, they face roadblocks from governments. Some governments perceive NGOs as undermining the role of the state and highlighting its inadequacies – more so when these NGOs are foreign.

But the use of charities for money laundering and terrorism financing is a valid concern of governments. In the wake of 9/11, authorities around the world have sought to clamp down hard on charities to ensure that they do not become a conduits for the support of terrorism. Charities say the measures are too harsh and wonder if this is part of a broader recalibration of the relationship between them and governments.