The Importance of NGOs in Housing Development

Without a doubt, non-government organizations or NGOs are crucial in terms of achieving the development goals of a country. After all, while state actors reserve the responsibility of protecting the well-being of citizens, development remains to be a responsibility of everyone, and not just public officials.

Sure enough, this is something we can readily observe in countries in Africa and South America where local governments could barely provide the basic necessities for citizens. In this sense, non-government actors will have to step in and serve as force multipliers in the drive to promote a better quality of life for affected populations.

It’s for this reason and several others that make NGOs an instrumental asset in the development sector, especially when it primarily involves the construction of sustainable housing.

Here are the few others reasons that make NGOs highly efficient as development partners.


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Since NGOs are basically made up of individuals coming from different backgrounds, there exists a health system for the sharing and adoption of new technologies and practices. Most NGOs have a research and development arm that allows them to conduct studies that aid in the design and implementation of their projects. Aside from that, NGOs can also help provide guidance along the lines of policy-formulation. They publish journals and hold seminars that aim to inform lawmakers of the most crucial issues to tackle along the lines of community development.

Resource sharing

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As much as we want to admit it, some governments are simply not up for the task of initiating development projects. This is mostly due to the lack of resources and funding. What’s more, procurement processes take too much time before a project gets started. Through NGOs, on the other hand, procurement processes are not as stringent and funds and other materials are readily available and can be rolled out at any time. This makes NGOs highly efficient in terms of resource-sharing since of their expenses come mostly from donations and cash grants from research institutions.


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Aside from funds and other resources, NGOs enjoy a great deal of manpower that’s available for any job at any time. From administrative staff down to a marketing team, NGOs have a well-rounded corporate culture that benefits from a highly effective talent pool. For sure, sustainable housing requires team members who are highly skilled in their respective specializations and who possess knowledge and competencies that allow for better productivity and efficiency.


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Doctrines serve as the basis for an NGO’s operational capabilities. In other words, doctrines refer to a set of ideals and principles that guide the members of the NGO towards making better decisions for the projects it is doing. In this respect, doctrines help organizations move forward and ensure that they are able to meet their targets. They operate within their own timetables, allowing them ample freedom to calibrate their goals every which way they want.

Sure enough, there are plenty more reasons why NGOs are highly efficient at what they do, especially when it comes to creating sustainable housing for vulnerable communities. It’s only a matter of understanding the specific needs of the local population and being able to make use of such information to drive development goals.

What Makes Sustainable Communities

Sustainability has been a concept that has become widespread in recent years. There are several reasons to this. First, industrial societies are growing at a rapid pace and they do so while affecting the health, culture, and livelihood of the people who are living in them.

Second, as the world population increases exponentially, it has become critical for governments to address scarcity, not only in terms of food and other resources, but also in terms of living space. And third, there is an ever increasing need to uplift the quality of life for many low-income families, especially those belonging to indigenous groups.

In the context of housing, sustainability involves the need for state and non-state actors to construct homes that are safe for the environment, respect indigenous rights, encourage inclusion, promote disaster resiliency, and realize the drive to accomplish the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals.

Let’s look at a few core tenets of sustainability that lie at the center of development work.

Disaster resiliency

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Every year, vulnerable countries within the Pacific Ring of Fire are highly susceptible to potential calamities, chief of which are earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanic eruptions. People living in these areas should be aware of the importance of disaster resiliency. Communities that are able to design and execute disaster response plans are able to reduce casualties and damages to infrastructure.

Indigenous rights

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Far-flung villages are critically in danger. With threats of suburban expansion, deforestation, and climate change, indigenous populations are on the brink of losing their way of life. With this in mind, it’s important to create communities that respect indigenous culture and prevent ages-old traditions form fading along with the villages that practice them.


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Housing development should also aim towards creating better inclusion. In other words, populations should be able to take part in needs-based policy-formulation, which is at the very core of framing sustainability within the context of social empowerment. Inclusion also involves allowing marginalized members of society to take part in crucial conversations that have a long-term impact on their livelihood and, in general, their way of life.


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As industrialization continues to chip away at our and oceans, it has become vital that housing development consider the potential effects that residential projects have on the environment. Sure enough, sustainable communities use alternative energy sources, adopt a more rational waste management program, and encourage frugal, organic lifestyles to its citizens.

Millennium Development Goals

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The United Nations plans to elevate the quality of life for the populations of its member-countries through initiatives that seek to uplift the social and cultural aspects of affected communities. Part and parcel of this drive is the reduction of poverty through livelihood development and other key projects that aim to give a better life, especially to the next generation. Sure enough, sustainable communities will have an important role in promoting this advocacy.