This post was originally meant to be a comment on Ida’s ‘In whose interest do the NGO’s and aid-agencies work for?’, but after writing for about ten minutes, I decided that this warranted its own post. This is indeed an interesting topic that links to a much deeper philosophical discussion on ‘service’ work.
Finally, the last thing I’d like to point out is that in the end, perfection is close to impossible. Everyone makes mistakes or gets it wrong sometimes, even if they have the best intentions at heart. (This is not counting those that do not have the community’s best interest at heart however). What is important is that there are people out there who still care, still engage and still believe in a better world, and that we are learning from our mistakes. We’re being criticised in forums such as these and turning our shortfalls into learning opportunities for the benefit of other NGO’s and ultimately the communities we work to serve.
Some more reading if you’re interested. Engineer-chic: Global Citizens, Critical Reflections