Jerusalem- In light of the central role played by politicized NGOs in public discourse regarding human rights, NGO Monitor published this week a database (available online) that provides opinion shapers and the public with an easily-accessible tool. The resource can inform the debate around legislation or funding mechanisms, such as the guidelines proposed by NGO Monitor to Israeli and European decision makers.

“The information in this database is crucial for the advancement of democratic transparency and accountability,” Professor Gerald Steinberg said. “Clearly Israelis are attentive to grants given by foreign governments to political NGOs. Accurate data on this issue is important, but in recent weeks rumors and misinformation have dominated the public discourse. This resource provides the facts and figures currently missing from the discussion. The data provided can inform the debate over funding guidelines, and make it more accurate.”

The database displays all the grants that were reported annually by 27 Israeli NGOs in the years 2012-2014, and sorts the information according to donor type (private, government and unclear), while also identifying funding originating from church groups. NGO Monitor’s initial analysis revealed the following, with the full methodology and an in-depth breakdown available online:

  • In 2012-2014, the 27 NGOs received a total sum of NIS 261,122,525 in grants and donations. 65% (NIS 169,728,500) from governments (through direct and indirect funding) and 34% (NIS 88,695,690) from private donors and foundations, while the source remained unclear for the remaining 1% (NIS 2,698,335).
  • Of the 27 groups examined, 20 receive more than 50% of their funding from governments. The three NGOs receiving the highest share of foreign government funding are Yesh Din (93.5%), Terrestrial Jerusalem (91.2%), and Emek Shaveh (90.2%).
  • Twenty-one governmental and intergovernmental entities fund Israeli NGOs (this includes funding by the EU, UN and the Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Secretariat- see below). The EU is the largest donor, providing NIS 28 million, followed by Norway and Germany.
  • Of NIS 88,695,690 received in private funding, leading foundations are the Sigrid Rausing Trust (14%), the New Israel Fund (12%), the Open Society Institute (7%), the Moriah Fund (4%), the Social Justice Fund (3%), and the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation (2%).1
  • 19% (NIS 50,325,109) of the funding is donated by Christian groups (churches or Christian humanitarian aid organizations). Most of these institutions receive large sums of government funding. 5% of donations were given by private religious institutions and/or donors.