General Fund "Portfolio"
Thank you for choosing to make your donation to a Nourish Bangladesh vetted Portfolio of NGOs and grassroots volunteer groups (a.k.a “The Portfolio”). Any donations made here will be transferred directly to a Nourish Bangladesh trusted account before being periodically disbursed to different members of the Portfolio. Donations made here will NOT be eligible for tax deductions in the USA. If you want to make a donation that will be tax deductible, please click here.
What is the Portfolio? The Portfolio is a list of NGOs and grassroots volunteer groups that have been vetted by Nourish Bangladesh. It includes both types of NGOs: those that offer tax deductions in the US and those that do not. It also includes local grassroots volunteer groups that spontaneously come together during disasters to fundraise and help those in need. Volunteer groups are usually convened and led by a team leader and as such are not registered with the government in Bangladesh or the USA. They often work as an independent unit but sometimes work as contractors for established NGOs. Most successful volunteer groups in Bangladesh, also more likely to be vetted by us, have a history of helping out during disasters - coming together during disasters and disbanding afterwards. The volunteers are a diverse mixture of youth and adults from different occupations. They tend to have very little overhead costs compared to established NGOs although it is usually not zero. We have so far vetted the following NGOs and volunteer groups:
NGOs with 501(c)(3) status: BRAC USA Inc, JAAGO Foundation Inc, B Desh Foundation Inc, Thrive
NGOs without 501(c)(3) status: Bidyanondo, Manusher Jonno Foundation, Action Against Hunger, Al Zahoor Welfare Foundation, Health and Development Aid
Volunteer Groups (led by: Mithun Das, Azdani N Bari, A J Salim, Muhtasim A Zisan
Why invest in the Portfolio instead of the best NGO and/or Volunteer Group? Our research suggests that there is no such thing as the best NGO or volunteer group. Trust that we have a healthy appetite for generating quantitative scales that reduces multidimensional measures into a single rank ordered scale. But we strongly believe that such an attempt would be misguided. Every rank reducing algorithm has certain assumptions about reducibility which we are quite certain does not apply here. In simple terms, we believe that all NGOs and volunteers have their strengths and weaknesses. Based on our preliminary research, we have reached the conclusion that given our objective of fighting hunger amidst the COVID19 pandemic, bigger NGOs tend to be low risk, low pay-off options while the smaller NGOs and grassroot volunteer groups tend to be higher risk, higher pay-off options. Thus, after vetting each organization, we intend to split your donations between the different NGOs and grassroots volunteer groups.
Why not include only 501(3)(c) NGOs in the Portfolio? Most grassroot volunteer groups in Bangladesh, as well as a number of highly recommended NGOs, are unable to offer tax deductions since they do not have a registered 501(3)(c) status in the US. However, these groups are doing a lot of good work, often more effectively and reaching populations that other NGOs might miss. We therefore strongly feel against excluding groups that do not have 501(3)(c) status. Additionally, NGOs without 501(3)(c) status and volunteer groups often have very low overhead costs, which most registered 501(3)(c) NGOs are unable to achieve.
What is the timeline for vetting and disbursing funds? We are officially fundraising or going live from June 1st, 2020. Our plan is to make disbursements from the portfolio every 1 to 2 months. So far we have vetted 9 NGOs and 4 volunteer groups. We may disburse your donations gradually over a period of several months to alleviate the problem of what practitioners in the field call “donor fatigue.”
How will the funds be spent? We have very specific purposes for these funds. The funds will be used to fight hunger amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, especially dry food packages for families. We send the money to NGOs and volunteer groups that do food relief and in some cases cash relief. Read more