How GiveIndia selects NGOs

How GiveIndia Certifies NGOs

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At GiveIndia, we value the trust and faith donors have placed in us while making a donation. To ensure that we live up to this trust, we have a stringent selection process for the NGOs profiled on our site. The process ensures that their donation reaches the right people and is utilised appropriately.

Objectivity of the selection:

Since the selection process is based on an entirely objective set of criteria, no person can influence the selection. The process is methodical and every organisation has to clear each step to be finally profiled on our site. Organisations that meet all the criteria get listed automatically.

Please note that, unless indicated otherwise, it is mandatory for your organization to fulfil all criteria. If we find, at any time during the listing process, that your organization does not fulfil our criteria we will not be able to list you on our website.

A : Pre-Requisites (Requirements & Criteria NGO must already be adhering to before being listed with GiveIndia)
GiveIndia Norms Why this is important for GiveIndia
The NGO is registered (as a Trust/ Society/ Sec 25 Company) Knowing legal status helps identify laws/rules applicable to the NGO. The documents also indicate for how long the NGO has existed
The NGO has a valid 12A To ensure that the NGO is a charitable organization
The NGO files IT & FCRA returns (if applicable) every year. The NGO files returns with the Charity Commissioner or Registrar of Societies (if applicable) To ensure all financial regulations of the land are complied with
Program Information
The NGO has a vision statement which drives the organization The NGO is able to state the goals clearly. The NGO is focussed & capable of measuring its performance to ensure effectiveness of its activities. To ensure that activities and goals are in line with its own stated objectives
The NGO maintain verifiable and up to date electronic or physical record of beneficiaries reached through its several programmes Beneficiary data is 'current' during visit and the organisation has a plan for the year
The NGO has been in operation for a minimum of 1 year from date of registration. It actually carries out programmes on the ground, and is not an intermediary or funding agency. NGO is live and functional and has gone through at least one annual cycle of operations & audit. Since the Listed NGO is liable to provide feedback reports, it needs to be accountable for the manner in GiveIndia funds are utilized
The NGO is unbiased in carrying out the activities of the organisation. For e.g. beneficiary selection, employee recruitment, etc. To be sure that the benefit is going to really needy people irrespective of caste, creed, gender, religion
The NGO has a Statutory Governing Body, of at least 2 members which ensures compliance with applicable laws and regulations. There is a group of people legally accountable for the actions of the NGO & that no decisions are unilateral
The NGO agrees to let GiveIndia display, on its website, the name, age, gender, occupation, and position of all its Board Members So that donors know the profile of people governing the NGO and can ascertain the impact of the same on continuity
Not more than 1/3rd of your Governing Body members are related to each other Board view is unbiased and takes decisions in the best interests of the NGO
Not more than half the Governing Body Members are regularly paid. Any sitting fee paid per meeting to members up to a limit of Rs. 3000 per meeting will not be considered under the above criteria. Board view is unbiased. If careers of Board members are dependent on the NGO, it may affect their decisions
If the Chairperson of the Governing Body of the organization is related to any other Board Member then he/she will not be remunerated. Board view is unbiased and takes decisions in the best interests of the NGO
Organisation Policies
The NGO has a HR Policy (applicable for organizations with more than 30 employees) and all paid staff are issued a letter of contract/ appointment Employees know their entitlements, role, rights & responsibilities so the organisation can attract the right kind of people.
The NGO has a written Policy for Purchase or Sale of Assets / Investments approved by the Governing Body (applicable only to organizations with assets/investments greater than Rs. 50 lacs) To ensure that NGO's core assets and resources are well managed in its best interests and it is de-risked from erosion due to stray faulty decisions
There are no material transactions involving conflict of interest between a board / staff member and the organization, unless specifically approved in a board meeting where the concerned member doesn't vote To ensure that decisions made are to maximize public good
The NGO's accounts are audited every year and these signed audited statements will be shared with GiveIndia: Balance Sheet / Income & Expenditure / Statutory Auditors’ Report / Schedules / Notes on Account specifying how income/ expenditure are recognized Annual Financials are audited by an External Auditor to ensure there is a third party monitoring over the financials of the organisation
Donation Options on GiveIndia
NGOs raise funds on the GiveIndia website through donation options (put link). A donation option is one sub-programme of the overall programme or activity for which the NGO wants to get donations. While the team will help the NGO create these options it is important to understand the criteria below Why this is important for GiveIndia
The NGO is willing to create at least one Donation Option for which it must be willing to provide individual feedback reports to donors Specific feedback reports are required to meet GiveIndia’s commitment to donors.
No beneficiary/cost component covered by a donation through GiveIndia can be funded by another donor. To avoid duplicate funding or double counting.
The NGO or its promoters/directors/staff must have at least 3 years' experience in the programmes of which Donation Options are created To ensure efficient implementation & impact
The Donation Options should be related to ongoing projects/activities directly implemented by the organisation The basis for requiring only implemented Donation Options to be registered on the GiveIndia site, is to ensure that all NGOs benefiting from donations raised through our Tier I fundraising activities have undergone our due diligence, and we are able to assure donors about the same. If a Donation Option of an NGO is something NGO does not implement itself but through other NGOs to whom it gives the money, then the NGO it passes on the money to is not due diligenced by us. We therefore have no way of verifying the costs or checking the financials, etc. of the organisation that is spending the money.
100% donations received through GiveIndia have to be assigned to poor human beings To be in line with GiveIndia's mission
The NGO cannot use any donations raised through GiveIndia for Political or Religious activities or programmes To be in line with GiveIndia's vision of providing greater opportunities to the poor in India (irrespective of religion or political affiliations).
GiveIndia is NOT a funding agency and donations through GiveIndia are not guaranteed. The NGO should ensure the programme is continued even without donations through GiveIndia To ensure continuity of programme
The NGO should have a minimum funding requirement of Rs. 1 lakh for each Donation Option and total of Rs. 3 Lakhs across all programmes listed on our website. Both the NGO & GiveIndia spend considerable amount of time and energy in creating effective Donation Options and the effort is not worth the cost incurred unless the NGO tries to raise a minimum of Rs. 1 lac through every donation option
The NGO can choose only 1 primary cause area from the 9 choices we offer for each Donation Option As of now, every sub-programme of the NGO is reflected under the cause area it is present in on our website
Cost breakups can be verified in accounts, and are based on a reasonable approximation of the current/previous Financial Year's actuals. To ensure that the money sought is based on actual costs
The benefit provided is VERIFIABLE. The NGO will maintain & make available, for viewing, a register of benefits given for GiveIndia donations (with signature/thumb impression of beneficiary) - for all material benefits (clothes, books, provisions, etc.). Benefits are verifiable. To help donors as well as GiveIndia to conduct independent visits to the beneficiary or end user of the product/service provided.
The NGO has a monitoring mechanism to ensure that the benefit is being fully utilized. To ensure that the benefit is enduring and the beneficiary is really helped.
The NGO undertakes to notify GiveIndia within 7 days if there is any change in implementation or if it cannot use the donations. To ensure that what is displayed on the website matches the operations on the ground. This also helps us ensure that there are no overdue feedback reports, mismatch between cost on our website and actual incurred, absence of beneficiaries or need no longer exists.
B : Additional Norms to be met once listed
GiveIndia Norms Why this is important for GiveIndia
The NGO's Governing Body has at least 2 meetings with a minimum gap of 3 months in a given financial year with quorum. Minutes of Governing Board meetings are documented and circulated among Board members Board is actively engaged. To ensure that the decisions/ discussions are recorded systematically and all Board members are aware of it. This helps in transparency
The Governing Body reviews and approves programmes, budgets, audited financial statements and other material activities of the organisation with a majority of the members in attendance being unrelated and non-remunerated To ensure that Board is active and most members actually participate in the decision making
The NGO's Annual Report should be available on request every year, within 8 months of the end of the organization's financial year.

The NGO agrees to let GiveIndia display the following information on its website:

1. Audited Financials

2. Salary and benefits of Head, the highest paid staff member and the lowest paid staff member

3. Board members names and position on the board

4. All remuneration and reimbursements to Board members

5. The distribution of staff according to salary levels and gender breakup

6. The total cost of international travel by all personnel (including volunteers) and Board members as per our format and classification
All stakeholders have access to important information about the NGO
The NGO agrees to let GiveIndia to contact its other donors to share our reports with them. The NGO will be copied on all emails No duplication of beneficiaries or of utilization of funds
At least 70% of payments are being made by cheque. 100% salaries should be paid by cheque or net transfer To ensure that best practices are followed
The NGO will record donations received and expenses incurred from those for GiveIndia and Give USA funds separately, either as a separate cost centre or group in electronic formats or physical registers To ensure that funds received from GiveIndia/GF USA are traceable during visit / audit
The NGO will submit Chartered Accountant certified annual Fund Utilization Certificates for funds received in the financial year, through GiveIndia/ Give USA, latest by Oct 31 of the next financial year. To fulfil statutory requirements
The NGO has to provide feedback for every donation channeled through GiveIndia as follows:
Donation Options
The NGO has to provide one time feedback report to the donor for every donation received within 3 months of being notified of donations.

•   NGO will provide a proposal detailing the program implementation and costs involved to share with the donor. Projects will be made live on the website only after receipt of this report.
•   The NGO will provide an Impact Report for every project to share with the donor.
•   It will also provide a list of beneficiaries to who the benefit has been provided from GI Donations once every six months.
To fulfil commitment of providing a feedback for donation made
Donation Options
The feedback report must contain all details the NGO has committed to report on at the time of creating the Donation Option. The items/services promised must be actually provided before sending the feedback and must be accounted for in the feedback report.
To respect the commitment given to donors. To ensure that the beneficiary has received everything as per commitment made by NGO
The NGO will provided full postal addresses for all beneficiaries with which donors or GiveIndia are able to locate the beneficiary. To help the donor and GiveIndia conduct independent interactions with the beneficiaries. In many cases, we find that addresses are not sufficient enough for us to contact the beneficiary directly, which is a critical requirement for independent visits.
NGOs defaulting twice on overdue reports will be delisted for a period of 1 year from GiveIndia site To respect the commitment of timely feedback reports that we make to our donors
The NGO will allocate all Donations received, within 30 days of receipt of donation or information of the donation. The NGO will also be required to provide GiveIndia a complete list of all existing and potential beneficiaries and donations received from GiveIndia will be allocated to the beneficiaries in this list. This list will be  provided for the Donation Option once a quarter, in advance. To ensure that NGO has a sufficient number of identified beneficiaries avoid utilization issues
C: Guidelines (for creating Donation Options on GiveIndia Website)
Guidelines to creating Donation Options on GiveIndia Website Rationale
The upper limit for ‘cash transactions without bills’ for any donation option is Rs.300 or 10% of the total Donation Option cost, whichever is lower. Any cash paid to beneficiaries/spent by NGO above this amount must be accounted for by supporting bills, which the NGO should produce if required. To ensure verifiability of payments
Donation Utilization:

•   Should not be dependent on external factors such as availability of beneficiaries
•   Should not require a minimum number of donations as a precondition.
•   For donation options that are one time activity, the NGO can utilize the donation only after the date on which the donation is made. However the donation can be used before date of disbursement (the day you receive the money from GiveIndia).
To ensure that all donors of GiveIndia can be serviced in a timely manner without any other dependence
The upper limit for ‘cash transactions without bills’ for any donation option is Rs.300 or 10% of the total Donation Option cost, whichever is lower. Any cash paid to beneficiaries/spent by NGO above this amount must be accounted for by supporting bills, which the NGO should produce if required. To ensure verifiability of payments
Donation Utilization:

• Should not be dependent on external factors such as availability of beneficiaries

• Should not require a minimum number of donations as a precondition.

• For donation options that are one time activity, the NGO can utilize the donation only after the date on which the donation is made. However the donation can be used before date of disbursement (the day you receive the money from GiveIndia).
To ensure that all donors of GiveIndia can be serviced in a timely manner without any other dependence
1. List only Donation Options that you "implement" yourself, i.e., the expenses incurred on the Donation Option are reflected in your accounts as expenses incurred and not as grants or donations made to other NGOs.

2. If the NGO buys material/services directly and work with another NGO as a partner just to ensure that the material/services are reaching the target audience, it is fine. In such cases, the materials/services expenses will reflect in your books as expenses, thus meeting criterion 1.

3. If the NGO pays school/college or hospital fees as a line item, it is an expense like any other expense (e.g., toothpaste expense, books expense, doctor's fees, etc.).
To ensure NGO's control on the programmes being listed on the GiveIndia platform
Guidelines to creating Donation Options on GiveIndia Website Rationale
Where administrative costs cannot be verified in the NGO's accounts this line item cannot exceed Rs.100 or 5% whichever is lower in the donation option price. Traceable admin expenses can be even 100% of the ask from the donor. To ensure verifiability of payments
Where any line item has a variability of more than 100% (i.e. where maximum cost is greater than twice the minimum cost) the cost should either be excluded from the Donation Option and treated as a separate entity or the minimum costs put. Averages based on previous year can be used if variability is lower than 50%, else the minimum will be used To ensure that all donors are not paying extra
Guidelines to creating Projects on GiveIndia Website Rationale
The NGO is encouraged to create a General Fund and Corpus Fund options apart from regular donation options.
General Fund Donation Options
General Fund is not earmarked money. This is a reimbursement of expenses incurred from your own resources that no donor is covering (for example overheads/ admin costs) You may choose how you spend from this Fund. We will provide a standard template to fill. You are not required to provide feedback for this option.
Corpus Fund Donation Options
Corpus Fund Option can only be created by organisations which have one. The NGO is required to submit a report of total Corpus Funds raised till 31st March of the previous year as well as the upcoming activities of the organisation towards which the interest from Corpus Fund would be utilised.
General funds are useful for the NGOs to be able to manage their administrative or any other costs which are not funded by other donors.
The NGO can take any part of its different programs to be listed as a Project Donation Option. For eg, meal program in a school, health care in old age home, rehabilitation expenses in physically challenged centres. The guidelines are as follows:

•   There will be no overlapping of cost items of Regular Donation Options and Project Options if the same programs are listed under both types of donation options.
•   The funding gap (total budget minus earmarked donations guaranteed for the financial year) will become the total Ask of the project.
•   NGO will continue to track expenses incurred from donations received through GiveIndia as a separate cost centre under the Project name.
•   The donor can make any value donations towards the project and the NGO is free to utilise it towards any expense of the project included in the proposal submitted.
To ensure that the modules of programmes which cannot be standardized can also be added to our platform.

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