Indian children shutterstock_258768347“Happiness will spread everywhere, if citizens of our country decide to give. Giving gives happiness.” – The late PJ Abdul Kalam, former President of India

In India, there is a nonprofit organization (NPO) or non-governmental organization (NGO) for every 600 individuals. The act of giving has been linked to the purification of individual souls. With over 150 million middle-income households, India is the largest mid-income group in the world.

Yet, despite each of these key factors, Bain & Company reported that to sustain and grow interest in philanthropy, there are several hurdles that nonprofit organizations need to address. Donor apathy and a mistrust of nonprofit organizations and their operations are two. Another is a large number of “disconnected” donors who donate out of guilt or due to personal relationships rather than a personal connection to the cause. There are also a large number of small, unsophisticated nonprofits that lack adequate transparency, sophistication, and organizational capacity, which make them less credible to donors.

The result is a two-tiered philanthropy space: one tier has sophisticated donors and sophisticated nonprofit organizations working together, and the other has disconnected donors and smaller, unsophisticated nonprofits.

At present, there are four sources of income for Indian nonprofit organizations:

  • Revenue from products and services
  • Public sources and government
  • Contributions from foreign foundations/grants
  • Private sources, including trust grants, corporations, high-net-worth individuals

India is home to over 1 million high-net-worth individuals, yet no one is addressing them. The South Asian Fundraising Group (SAFRG) reported that India raises only $500MM annually, or $0.45 per head, against a potential of $8 to 9 billion, or $8 per head.

Despite this enormous potential, according to figures compiled by the Indian government, the US is the top donor nation for Indian NGOs, with donations coming from both the US Government and private US institutions. Britain and Germany trail closely behind.

The Solicitation
Innovairre’s new presence in India comes at a critical time. During the latest round of action against NGOs, the Union Home Ministry has cancelled the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) registration of over 4,000 NGOs as of May 2015. This means nonprofits must now explore additional, previously unchartered territory for donations.

Solicitation plans today should emphasize the importance of understanding the prospects you are engaging: What do they care about? What is their personal and family history? What is their personal connection to the nonprofit’s values? What other organizations do they support, and what do they wish to receive as recognition of their support?

With Innovairre’s help, nonprofits will now have an enhanced ability to record and manage all of the individuals who are interested in supporting a cause. NGOs will now be able to identify, involve, solicit, and receive donations from interested prospects. Additionally, NGOs will be able to thank and recognize individual donors in a personalized and timely manner.

Thanks to the introduction of Innovairre in our country, India-based nonprofits can access the world’s largest fundraising organization, and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

Debanshu Banerjee is General Manager of Innovairre, India. Innovairre Communications supports more than 500 nonprofit organizations around the world. For more information on fundraising internationally or in the U.S., contact us at  Follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.