Accountability is the heart of the work of Civil Society Organizations. It is the pillar of reliability and efficiency . It is a non-negotiable value, not a choice, and concerns, without exception, all the aspects of work of the organizations.
Accountability is an institutionalized and continuous relationship between the organizations and all the people who participate in their work. Accountability means explaining our actions, keeping our commitments, self-evaluate and improve constantly.
Accountability means responsibility, transparency and efficiency at all levels:
- in finding and developing financial resources
- in taking advantage of the natural environment
- in cooperating with people (beneficiaries , supporters , volunteers , employees)
- in cooperating with official stakeholders, the private sector and the media
- in the decision- making process and the governance of the organization
WHAT IS TRANSPARENCY?
Transparency is not just the mere provision of information, but the facilitation for effective access to important information. This information should be:
- Relevant and easily accessible: it should be presented in a simple and easy to understand language, suitable to be understood by different audiences. It should include the necessary details to allow the analysis, participation and evaluation.
- Timely and accurate: it should be promptly available, in order to provide to all interested parties sufficient time for analysis, assessment and engagement.
HOW IS EFFECTIVENESS DEFINED?
The effectiveness of human rights and development organizations is not limited to the transparent transfer of funds for the implementation of projects, but also to the substantial benefit that these projects have on people and the environment. The organizations must:
- Listen to the needs of people with whom they work and plan together sustainable projects that respond to their needs;
- Work towards the long-term impact on people’s lives, foster their empowerment and not the continuous dependence on their work;
- (Self-) evaluate regularly in respect to the methods and the results of their programs, enrich their knowledge and practices and constantly improve.
WHICH ARE THE MINIMUM NECESSARY ACCOUNTABILITY CRITERIA FOR THE MEMBERS OF THE PLATFORM?
- 1. Statute published on the organization website or easily accessible
- 2. Identification of members of the governing bodies
- 3. Clear vision and mission
B. Financial Management
- 4. Existence of budgets and financial reports (preferably published on the site or otherwise available, if requested)
- 5. Record of all transactions, archiving and preservation of relevant documents
- 6. Annual audit (internal and/or external)
- 7. Existence of a code of conduct that defines the core values of the organization
- 8. Implementation of the values during the operating procedures and implementation of actions
The objective of the Platform is the complete and effective implementation of the Accountability Framework for its Members and interested organizations, which will include the criteria of the NGOs Transparency and Accountability Charter. In order for all organisations to accomplish this within a specific timeframe, the Platform members will support other organisations in the development of structures and processes that will bring greater efficiency to the organization.