Rural NGOs in Karnataka to get digital makeover- The New Indian Express

Express News Service

BENGALURU: To help rural-based NGOs reach out to the right beneficiaries and give the organisations a tech makeover, 1NGO, a social impact startup is assisting NGOs to adapt to digitalisation free of cost and help them develop as well as maintain social media channels. 

Having already digitised 663 NGOs in rural and semi-urban parts of Karnataka the group aims to equalise opportunities for individuals doing social work.  According to 1NGO, only 3 per cent of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds reach semi-urban areas while less than 9 per cent of the donations reach rural organisations.

In Karnataka, over the next two years (2025) the group plans to digitise 3,000 NGOs that serve various causes such as education, old age homes, orphanages, women empowerment groups and malnutrition. The group aims to bridge the digital divide and let beneficiaries easily reach social workers in the hinterlands of the state by helping them develop websites and social media pages.

“We want to make NGOs in rural areas capable of running their own websites and social media channels. If we just make a website and give it will become reductant, however, if we can train them they will be digitally enabled and open to more opportunities,” said Gururaj Potnis, Co-founder and Secretary, 1NGO. He added that a lot of NGOs in rural areas have very little visibility despite the good cause and organisations in urban areas or cities like Bengaluru get much more donations. 

The group has also been conducting workshops in groups, webinars and small digital courses to aid NGOs in understanding how they are reaching the right beneficiaries and donors. 1NGO’s digitalisation strategy for 2023 involves launching several new initiatives, such as donor implementation programs, digital awards for NGOs, and special digital literacy sessions with corporates and students. 

Priya Karnik, Co-founder and President, 1NGO said, “Our vision is to prepare the three million NGOs in India for a digital-centric world, helping them use digital tools effectively to communicate the impact of their work as well as raise funds. We consider it as our moral responsibility to give back to the community we grow and thrive in.”

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