The Donor-Driven Model and Financial Sustainability: A Case Study from Palestinian Non-Government Organizations

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Rabeh Morrar
Suhail Sultan


This study presents factors that encourage Palestinian NGOs to embrace financial sustainability employing modern ideologies that encompass community engagement, voluntarism, collaboration, and business-like practices in order to meet societal challenges. The study explores the reliance of Palestinian NGOs on external funds (donor-driven funds) and the environment impact of their attempts at financial sustainability. Data were gathered using semi-structured interviews with 22 NGOs in the West Bank and Gaza in 2019. The data were analyzed through thematic analysis using the computer software MAXQDA. Key findings were that Palestinian NGOs need to alleviate the dependency on a donor-driven model by functioning independently from donors’ agendas; and that Palestinian NGOs need to collaborate with each other to centralize their efforts and avoid fragmentation. Further, the Palestinian government needs to revisit the relevant laws to regulate the civil society sector and avoid competition between NGOs and private sector on the one hand, and NGOs and governmental institutions on the other hand.

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Articles (refereed)