Grassroots Support Organizations (GRSOs)
Forgive me! It is first necessary to modify the term NGO. ADRI [Action for Integrated Rural Development] and other similar Rwandan organizations prefer the term OAIB (organization to support base initiatives). It sounds more positive. It better explains what we do, what we are and what we would like to be. It avoids the aberration of having to define ourselves by what we are not.
In country after country, the evaluators met people . . . who were undoubtedly among the best and the brightest that their country, or any country, had to offer--people whose reputations and abilities grew with their years of service. 1
NGOs work harder than governments, are less menacing than parties, and possess human and financial resources that are scarce among the common people.
Rubem Cesar Fernandes2
Grassroots support organizations work with GROs in communities other than their own and are usually staffed by paid professionals, although they may also use middle-class volunteers. 3 Some GRSOs are membership organizations, but a majority are not. GRSOs generally work with existing GROs or help create new ones. Unlike GROs, which may make profits, GRSOs are nonprofit organizations, although some are developing for-profit fund-raising activities. In contrast to GROs, which grew from traditional organizational roots, GROs began to emerge in the 1960s. 4 Despite these distinctions, there is often a fine line between GROs and small, locally based GRSOs.