8 Easy Steps to Start an NGO in India

Jul 20, 2023


Starting a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) in India can be a rewarding way to help others and make a positive impact on society. NGOs play an essential role in addressing various issues, such as education, healthcare, and the environment. If you’re thinking about setting up an NGO in India, here’s a simple guide with eight easy steps to help you get started.

Here is the list of 8 Easy Steps to Start an NGO in India

  • Step 1: Define Your Purpose

The first step is to know what your NGO is all about. Decide what issue or cause you want to focus on, like helping children, protecting the environment, or supporting women’s rights. Clearly state your goals and the change you want to bring. This will help others understand your mission and get involved.

  • Step 2: Choose the Right Structure

In India, NGOs can be formed as Trusts, Societies, or Section 8 Companies. The most common one is a Trust. It requires at least two people to be trustees. Societies need a minimum of seven members, while Section 8 Companies are for bigger NGOs with at least three directors. Each structure has its own rules and legal requirements.

  • Step 3: Find Good People

To run your NGO well, you need a good team. Look for people who care about the cause and have skills that can help the organization. Having a diverse team with different perspectives is beneficial.

  • Step 4: Register Your NGO

Once you have your team and structure in place, it’s time to register your NGO. If you chose to form a Trust, create a trust deed with the objectives and details of trustees. Societies need a memorandum of association and rules. For Section 8 Companies, you need approval from the Registrar of Companies (ROC) and the Memorandum of Association (MOA) and Articles of Association (AOA).

  • Step 5: Get Tax Exemptions

To encourage donations, it’s essential to get tax exemptions for your NGO. Apply for tax benefits under Sections 12A and 80G of the Income Tax Act, 1961. Section 12A exempts your NGO from income tax on its surplus income, while Section 80G allows donors to claim tax deductions for their contributions.

  • Step 6: Open a Bank Account

Having a separate bank account for your NGO helps manage finances better. Open an account in your NGO’s name to keep the funds separate and organized.

  • Step 7: Follow Local Regulations

Make sure your NGO complies with all local laws and regulations, such as labor laws and environmental rules. Staying compliant will build trust and avoid legal troubles.

  • Step 8: Run Your NGO Smoothly

Set up a strong governance structure with clear roles and responsibilities for everyone. Create good financial management and reporting practices. Regularly review your NGO’s progress and make improvements to achieve your goals effectively.

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Starting an NGO in India is a great way to make a positive impact and help those in need. By following these eight easy steps, you can lay a solid foundation for your organization. Stay focused on your mission, be transparent, and work with dedication to bring about meaningful change in society. With a committed team and proper planning, your NGO can make a real difference and contribute to a better world.

Top five questions on NGO along with their answers

What is the purpose of an NGO? 

Answer: The purpose of an NGO, or Non-Governmental Organization, is to address social, environmental, or humanitarian issues and bring about positive change in society. NGOs work independently of the government and aim to support and advocate for various causes, such as education, healthcare, poverty alleviation, and environmental conservation.

How can I start an NGO in India?

 Answer: To start an NGO in India, you need to follow these steps:

  1. Define your NGO’s mission and objectives.
  2. Choose a legal structure (Trust, Society, or Section 8 Company).
  3. Assemble a dedicated team of trustees or members.
  4. Register your NGO with the appropriate authorities.
  5. Obtain tax exemptions under Sections 12A and 80G of the Income Tax Act.
  6. Open a separate bank account for the NGO.
  7. Ensure compliance with local regulations and laws.
  8. Establish effective governance and operational practices.

What are the benefits of tax exemptions for NGOs in India? 

Answer: Tax exemptions provide significant benefits to NGOs in India. Under Section 12A, an NGO becomes eligible for income tax exemption on its surplus income, which means it won’t have to pay income tax on the funds it receives for its activities. Section 80G allows donors to claim tax deductions for their contributions to the NGO, encouraging more people to donate and support its cause.

Why is having a diverse team important for an NGO?

 Answer: Having a diverse team in an NGO brings together individuals with different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives. This diversity can lead to more creative problem-solving, better decision-making, and a deeper understanding of the needs of the community they serve. It also enhances the NGO’s ability to connect with a broader audience and build relationships with diverse stakeholders.

How can an NGO ensure transparency and accountability? 

Answer: An NGO can ensure transparency and accountability by:

  1. Maintaining clear financial records and publishing annual reports.
  2. Providing regular updates to donors and stakeholders on the organization’s activities and progress towards its goals.
  3. Encouraging external audits to verify the proper utilization of funds.
  4. Complying with all legal and regulatory requirements.
  5. Engaging with beneficiaries and the community to gather feedback and involve them in decision-making processes.

referring page –https://thenationaltrust.gov.in/

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