Southern African NGO Network (SANGONeT)
SANGONeT was founded in 1987, and over the past 20 years has developed into a dynamic civil society organisation with a history closely linked to the social and political changes experienced by South Africa during its transition to democracy. SANGONeT is still one of very few non-governmental organisations in Africa involved in the field of information communication technologies (ICTs) and continues to serve civil society with a wide range of ICT products and services.
SANGONeT’s ICT services and interventions continue to be shaped by the challenge of strengthening the capacity of NGOs in finding long-term and sustainable solutions in response to Southern Africa’s development problems. NGOs’ capacity for service delivery increasingly requires that attention be given to their ability to use, manage and implement as well as integrate ICTs into their activities.
During the past few years SANGONeT has conceptualised and implemented the following important new ICT initiatives in support of the NGO sector in South Africa, and increasingly, the rest of Southern Africa:
Thetha: The SANGONeT ICT Discussion Forum – launched in March 2003, Thetha forums provide NGOs with the opportunity to discuss ICT issues of common concern at both provincial and national levels. SANGONeT has already organised more than 20 Thetha forums in South Africa, and in 2006 expanded this initiative to five Southern African countries. A further six Southern African countries will be covered as of 2008 (www.sangonet.org.za/thetha).
SANGONeT “ICTs for Civil Society” Conference and Exhibition – this annual event, first held in March 2005, presents NGOs with an important opportunity to reflect on the challenges and opportunities presented by ICTs in support of their work. The most recent event was held from 17-18 July 2007 in Johannesburg, and the next event will be held in October 2008 (www.sangonet.org.za/conference2007).
SANGONeT NGO and Development Information Portal – launched in October 2005, this portal provides a gateway to the South African NGO sector. It includes the Prodder NGO and Development Directory, as well as the weekly NGO Pulse e-newsletter (www.sangonet.org.za / www.prodder.org.za).
SANGOTeCH – this online technology donation portal, launched in December 2006, aims to assist NGOs by providing software and hardware for very low or discounted fees in conjunction with ICT donor partners, as well as by supporting NGOs to maximise their ICT purchases and infrastructure. This project will be expanded to the rest of Southern Africa in 2008 (www.sangotech.org).
South African NGO Web Awards – first held in 2006, this annual competition is run in conjunction with the SANGONeT Conference and aims to raise awareness among NGOs about the benefits of having a web presence, stimulate interest in the application of web solutions and applications, and showcase best practices in website creation and maintenance.
The State of ICTs in the South African NGO Sector – this annual research project, first implemented in 2007, aims to analyse the South African NGO sector’s application and awareness of ICTs in support of achieving its strategic objectives. The outcomes of the project will inform and guide the development of SANGONeT’s future ICT products and services, and assist NGOs, funders and other strategic stakeholders in understanding the role and relevance of ICTs in support of the sector (www.sangotech.org/ict-survey).
Civic Journalism in Africa project – this three-year project, implemented in conjunction with Hivos in six African countries, aims to improve the technical and journalistic capacity of African NGOs to use a mixture of traditional and digital media strategically and with journalistic professionalism to support democratic processes and a diverse and independent media environment.
SN Announce – this e-mail advertising service provides an invaluable service to the NGO sector in Southern Africa. With a potential readership of more than 10 000 people, it remains one of the most cost-effective and efficient ways to reach non-profit organisations, development practitioners, grantmakers and others working in the development sector.
NGO CEO Circle / NGO CEO Summit – SANGONeT and Project Literacy initiated the CEO Circle in 2006 to create a platform for discussion within the leadership of the NGO sector in Gauteng, encouraging networking, collaboration and peer support. An important objective of this quarterly forum is to create a space for decision-makers to discuss common institutional and strategic development issues, creating the opportunity to highlight problems and share solutions. Building on the success of the CEO Summit, SANGONeT hosted the first NGO CEO Summit on 29 November 2007 at the Balalaika Hotel in Sandton, attended by 40 NGO leaders.
APC member since 1993
- Topic areas of expertise:
- Access to information,
- ICT for development,
- ICT policy,
- Strategic use of the internet
209 Smit Street
Tel: +27 (0)11 403 4935
Fax: +27 (0)11 403 0130