An Interview With The Spanish NGO AIDA

Thursday, January 27, 2011 | 10:41 AM


This week we wanted to highlight a Spanish organization, AIDA, that has been a grantee for 6 months. We hope the interview with AIDA below will help non-profits gain a better understanding of the non-profit sector and online media world in Spain.

Could you briefly describe AIDA?
AIDA: AIDA (Ayuda, Intercambio y Desarrollo) stands for “Help, Exchange and Development” and is a NGO that has been working since 1999 in the development and improvement of the quality of life of some of the poorest areas in the world. Declared as a Public Utility organization in 2004, AIDA has been working on projects of economic, human and cultural development; offering its aid and services in 12 countries of Latin America, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. The work is mainly done through cooperation projects for development and thanks to the help of several professional experts.

What are the major challenges of Spanish NGOs?
AIDA: In the last few years, the biggest challenge has been the transition to a professional sector. The ongoing process has taken place inside the institutions but has involved convincing society of the need of a more professional way of doing things.

The financial crisis is also a big issue; it has made the process of professionalism and collaboration more difficult by making access to public and private funds more challenging. This makes it difficult to maintain projects and to be able to develop them in the way they were originally stated. Altogether, it makes executing organizations’ objectives very difficult.

Which role do NGOs play in the online space?
AIDA: From our point of view, a great part of society uses online media to get information about the work and the need of NGOs. Organizations are using more and more tools online to increase the awareness of their activities, since it can be faster, cheaper and more efficient than traditional media.

How has Google Grants impacted your organization?
AIDA: In our case, Google Grants has been crucial because it has connected people looking for our service with our organization online. People interested in our services are able to reach us in a fast and easy way.

How long have you been part of Google Grants and how did you hear about the program?
AIDA: AIDA has been a member of Google Grants since July 2010. We knew about AdWords because of it’s importance in the sector of online communication and advertising. We found out about Google Grants through a volunteer of our NGO.

How has AIDA benefited from Google Grants?
AIDA: Google Grants has made it easier to find volunteers and employees for our institution and has increased both material and economic donations for our projects. We have also received several collaboration propositions, kind feedback on our activities and projects, and there has been an overall increase in awareness of our initiatives.

Could you give us a more specific example of how Google Grants has helped your NGO?
AIDA: AIDA Books & More is an online library through which we sell used books that have been donated by companies and individuals. All the collected money is then used to finance our aid projects. Thanks to our Google Grants ads, the donations to this project have increased significantly, as well as the collaboration of society to keep developing it.

Is there any other project that you would like to accomplish with Google Grants?
AIDA: It would be lovely if the Google Grants team could organize courses and workshops for NGO volunteers and employees in order to learn more about AdWords and other Google products.

Would you recommend Google Grants to other NGOs?
AIDA: Of course!