HIV and AIDS and NGOs

NGOs have been playing a critical role in addressing the HIV and AIDS issue in developing countries. Their role was widely acknowledged even before governments in many countries hardly began doing anything against HIV and AIDS. They have been working as key partners for governments and international agencies in not only in the prevention of the spread of HIV and AIDS but also for its treatment and support for those living with the disease and also working towards removing the stigma associated … [Read more...]

Civil Society

Civil Society comprises of all those civic and social organizations working for the betterment of the society but is completely independent from the state and commercial institutions in the market. Although the definition of term, “civil society” can be complex, it usually refers to those groups which are working collectively for improving the society as a whole and undertake a share responsibility and interest to achieve their goals. Civil society organizations can include: NGOs, international … [Read more...]

ICT and Sustainable Development

Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) has been increasingly recognized as a significant tool for poverty reduction in poor and low-income developing countries. Currently, there is high level of interest and commitment from various quarters, including governmental agencies, private organizations, international development organizations and NGOs to explore, adapt and implement technology-based projects to speed up activities aimed for sustainable development of rural and marginalized … [Read more...]

Human Rights

According to the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), human rights are “basic rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled.” These can include right to life, liberty, freedom of expression, equality before law and economic and social rights, right to work, right to education and right to food. The UDHR, from where the definition has been taken, is actually a non-biding resolution adopted in 1948 by the United Nations General Assembly, but it has gained increased … [Read more...]

Developing Countries

The term, “developing countries” is often used in international development and many of us think that we are clear in what it means. But the fact is that despite the World Bank’s profound classification, there is considerable contradiction in accepting and analyzing what actually developing countries are. This is because people in many developing countries enjoy high standard of living despite having other low indicators. The United Nations has given a geographical understanding of the … [Read more...]

Sustainable Development

The Concise Oxford English Dictionary defines the term, “sustainability” as (the ability to) “keep (something) going over time or continuously.” In context of a community-based service delivery program, it can mean to be the ability of the program to provide the services continuously or for over a longer period of time. A sustainable program should not just be self-sufficient, but also self-reliant. The emphasis on sustainability of a program is to reduce the dependency on external support, … [Read more...]


A condition of life where people are unable to afford basic human needs such as food, clothing and shelter is referred to poverty. But poverty can also be relative when compared to other existing standards of living or incomes. When economies produce little, then poverty conditions are high. It has also been observed that countries which have high population level also have high levels of poverty. The most industrialized nations in the world have better economies and therefore, the poverty … [Read more...]

Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs)

Although the term, NGO or non-governmental organization means any organization that is not controlled or managed by a government, it has been increasingly used and understood to large and small agencies or groups that work towards some sort of development for a community. The term is mostly applied to such organizations working in developing and low-income countries while in the west, the word, ‘nonprofit’ is more popular. Even international nonprofits headquartered in the developed world are … [Read more...]

A Health Microinsurance Project

A health microinsurance project can cover the following benefits under its plan of operation: (1) Basic Health Care: Preventive health care, health education, immunization, family planning etc; part of curative care such as medical consultations, nursing care, medical care etc (2) Hospital Treatment: Hospital accommodation, medical, surgical, technical expenses and medicines. (3) Specialised Treatment: Includes consultations with specialist doctors (gynaecologists, paediatricians, surgeons, … [Read more...]

What is Health Microinsurance?

Health micro-insurance - referred by different names such as community-based health insurance, micro-health insurance, mutual health insurance, community-based health financing, community health insurance etc -is a form of micro-insurance in which resources are pooled to mitigate health risks and cover health care services in full or in part. Health micro-insurance schemes are more complex in nature compared to life insurance schemes, as they provide services towards specific risks or illnesses … [Read more...]

The Principles of Microinsurance

The principles of microinsurance are: (1)    Risk-sharing and Pooling of Resources: The main principle of any micro-insurance scheme is that a group’s (community) resources are pooled to share risks (such as health, death, pension, accidents etc) in order to organise protection directly for themselves. (2)    Specified Risks Only: A micro-insurance scheme can be designed to protect only against specified risks for which the likelihood of that risk can be calculated. This specifically applies … [Read more...]

What is Microinsurance?

Insurance is a kind of a financial service whereby clients pay a premium on regular basis in return for reimbursement at higher rate when a risk occurs.  In principle, it is one of the risk management tools to counter the losses suffered from a crisis.  It is a pool of resources developed by the contributions from many people and benefited by those who are at risk. There are various kinds of insurance services from life, health, cars, electronic equipment etc. Micro-insurance, on the other hand, … [Read more...]

Specific characteristics of the formal economy and informal economy

The formal economy: (1)    has an organised system of employment with clear written rules of recruitment, agreement and job responsibilities. (2)    has a standardised relationship between the employer and the employee is maintained through a formal contract. (3)    the employee is expected to work for fixed hours and receives fixed salaries in addition to incentives and perks. He works under a decent work environment and is entitled to benefits such as leave, savings, loans etc.  He has an … [Read more...]

What is the difference between formal economy and informal economy?

Mr. ABC gets a job at a software company. His letter of appointment is enclosed with a contract explaining his job responsibilities.  He gets a fixed salary in addition to incentives based upon his qualifications and experience. He works in an organized environment where his colleagues enjoy similar benefits. He is entitled to seek claim from the company, if he loses this job or falls sick.  He also has attractive retirement options. Mr. XYZ works as a porter at the local market. He is often … [Read more...]

What is Informal Economy?

The term, “Informal Economy” was first used by Keith Hart (Informal Income Opportunities and Urban Employment in Ghana” in Journal of Modern African Studies) during the 1970s to describe the temporary economic strategies adopted by migrant workers in Ghana. Over time, various definitions have come into place. ILO’s Kenya Report (Employment incomes and equality: A strategy for increasing productive employment in Kenya, 1972) defines informal activities as “a way of doing things”, … [Read more...]