This free pdf training guide goes into detail about NGOs, why they are important, their role in development, tools to help assess the health of an NGO, and guidelines for how Peace Corps Volunteers (Volunteers) can acknowledge, appreciate and further empower NGOs.

Used by the US Peace Corps to train their volunteers, it is not only intended to teach their Volunteers about the importance of NGOs and how they work etc. but how to intentionally contribute to strengthening the local NGOs’ capacities and governance practices. After all, the NGOs will be in the community long after any PCV moves onto their next phase of life or learning.
You can download the file here:
Training Guide

Assessing Our NGOs’ Health

A valuable part of this document goes into the health of an NGO. For NGOs, some kind of self-assessment is critical, as the best ones to review our own state of health is ourselves, as we, the NGO leadership and members, are the ones who can in fact make the greatest changes that will lead to our organization’s health… when we know what to do.

Using the NGO Capacity Profiler is a valuable exercise for any NGO to do.

The following are some of the ways the NGO Capacity Profile has been used by Peace Corps staff, Volunteers, and their NGO community partners.

The NGO Capacity Profile:
Assists programming staff during site development in determining the types of tasks a Volunteer might perform at an NGO.
• Is used as a training outline for Volunteers who are working with NGOs in their primary or community outreach projects.
• Serves as a language/communications tool when the Counterpart has a local translation and the Volunteer has an English version.
• Helps the Volunteer identify areas where his or her skills can be used to build the NGO’s capacity.
• Provides a picture of how a well-run NGO operates by looking at the “Indicators of an NGO With a High Level of Capacity.”
• Suggests to Volunteers and their NGO colleagues items that should be included in the organization’s operating and/or strategic plan(s).
• Provides a mechanism to determine baseline data and indicators for monitoring and evaluation.
• Demonstrates to donors and potential donors the capabilities of the NGO.

Additional Notes:

The training guide goes on to note: It is important to remember to “use the NGO Capacity Profile participatively and appreciatively to identify the NGO’s strengths and help establish a vision of what an NGO can be. The NGO Capacity Profile is more effective when it is translated into the local language. The profile provides a picture of where the organization is and can help those working with the NGO (board members, staff, donors, clients, and development workers) decide which functional areas need to be strengthened and how to go about strengthening them.”
If you are interested in taking an online version of this NGO Capacity assessment, click the link below to be taken to the form. You will be asked a number of questions and at the conclusion, you will be asked to submit an email so we can send you the results of the survey. You do not have to provide any identifying information about your organization, and the results will be made available only to the person submitting the answers to the survey. It will be intended to be used as a guide for feedback and self-assessment. And no more.