How to Start an NGO in India: A Step-by-Step Guide

How to Start an NGO in India: A Step-by-Step Guide

Read on to get stepwise instructions on how to start an NGO in India and all the reasons why you shall hire a legal consultant and accountant.

Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are the backbone of India’s social sector. These organisations are critical in assisting the poorer strata of society as well as the weaker sectors of our economy that the government frequently overlooks. As a result, it is frequently stated that NGOs perform tasks that an affluent welfare state would undertake. In India, on the other hand, begin an NGO, sometimes known as charity organisations, rely on donations from the wealthy.

In simple words, an NGO is a legally constituted and binding non-governmental organisation created by a group of people with no involvement from the government.

Although the term ‘non-governmental organisation’ has been known for a long time, not-for-profit charities have always been around. Such organisations were largely localised and frequently founded by religious groups. “non-governmental organisation” appears in UN Charter Chapter 10, Article 71. As per the World Bank, NGOs are divided into two categories: operational and advocacy. However, many followers are inclined towards the combination of both. NGOs can focus on various issues, including disaster assistance, women’s rights, economic growth, and more. Here, we will be providing answers to your question about setting up an NGO.

Easily to Begin an NGO in India

  1. Determine your NGO’s mission and cause
  2. Form the Board of Directors/Members
  3. Choose a name for your NGO
  4. Memorandum Articles of Incorporation/ Articles of Association
  5. Register your NGO
  6. Collect Funds
  7. Establish a wide network

NGO Setup

To be successful with your approach to creating and maintaining a non-profit organisation, you must masterfully combine the critical ingredients that will succeed or break your efforts — anything from promotion and fundraising to volunteers vs paid employees and everything in between. On the other hand, programs and initiatives can alter the flavour of the ultimate output. You’re condemned to fail if you don’t grasp your target audience’s demands and design your programs to meet those needs.

Here are the 8 Steps to begin the NGO:

  1. Establish your Goals – It is the most basic step in forming an NGO since it empowers you to define the organisation’s goal. At this point, it is suggested that you put pen to paper and begin writing a statement that outlines the NGO’s mission, values, and target audience.
  2. Setting Up a Board of Directors- Despite the fact that an NGO is a philanthropic organisation, it must be conducted as a company with well-defined goals and financial boundaries to be successful. To do so, you’ll need to form a board of directors and hire seasoned individuals with experience in administration, legal issues, finance, human resource management, and technology – even if only for a limited time.
  3. Legal Representatives – At least at first, many activities should be handled by the best lawyer who has expertise in registering the NGO, submitting legal documents to get the certificate for the NGO, filing audits, dealing with tax concerns, and requesting to get a license.
  4. Selecting a Name – Consider exploring other similar organisations to see what names they’ve selected to best express the work they undertake before settling on a name for your NGO. Even if your preferred name is already taken, the experience will spark thoughts, and you’ll quickly discover the right name lurking in the shadows.
  5. Incorporation Drafting – Drafting the articles of incorporation, which provide a legal description and view of the organisation and grant power to the board, is another responsibility for your top legal counsel. The articles specify the name of the NGO, its intention and objective, a statement decreeing its non-profit status, the location of the NGO, the number of board members and their names, and the personal liabilities of individuals. If the NGO has capital stock (rarely any, but if it has, please do mention it), the operating period of the NGO shall be described and written, leaving it with zero ambiguity. 
  6. Registration of the NGO – NGOs shall adhere to a set of legal requirements and restrictions interpreted by the legislation. An NGO registration will be considered a legal entity once the registration process has been completed. Do a proper investigation about the concerned authorities who register NGOs: You must submit the relevant documents for the application and provide information such as the NGO’s title, objectives, and the total number of board members. Take your time with this step to make sure you’ve covered everything legally. If not, do it so there will not be any loopholes left.
  7. Accounting System and Fundraising – You need to establish a transparent accounting system that keeps track of where funding comes from and how it is used from the beginning of your NGO’s existence. Transparent in this context means that your accounting records are open to the public eye, leaving them no doubt regarding your intention.
    Later focus on your budget and fundraising. Money is a complex concept. Implement a fundraising plan once all the board members have determined your NGOs programs.
    You’ll also have to work out where to seek money. Loans, grants, individual donations, and membership dues are just a few of the choices available to NGOs. It is also feasible to obtain government funding. Make use of your network as soon as you begin the fundraising process. Always review your messaging to improve your ability to appeal to donors.
  8. Working on Projects – The final stage is setting up an NGO to begin working on a project. You should begin by setting small, attainable goals. Assign each individual a clear responsibility, set a project budget, and implement a monitoring and assessment system. This will allow you to determine what’s effective and what isn’t during the project, and then you’ll be able to examine the outcome.

Any non-profit organisation should strive to become obsolete at some point. This indicates that the challenge they’re trying to solve has been resolved. It’s an achievement if finding issues to solve becomes more difficult. On the other hand, the need is likely to outlast the NGO. Always keep the long-term in mind when launching an NGO. Create a robust network and long-lasting partnerships. Take the time to lay a solid foundation for your company that will last for years. You’ll set your NGO up for success if you’re meticulous and thoughtful in the early stages. Vakilsearch is offering services to cover your legal needs on how to begin an NGO in India, and we provide legal services that include documentation, accounting, etc.

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Registered in February 2015, YUVA started as a group of enthusiastic individuals, and today it has mobilised thousands of young people with a simple aim of creating a better future for children and youth of Mauritius. At the heart of YUVA’s duty lies the conviction that the collective destinies of the human race are bound together.

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