For the right reasons: Lessons from an Irish NGO merger

Kumba Kinteh, president of the women’s group in Marong Kunda and a member of the Eco-zone Committee, tends to her rice field in Njabba Junda, the Gambia. The committee is supported through Gorta’s partnership with a local NGO. In July this year, Gorta merged with Self Help Africa, another Irish development NGO that focuses on agricultural development. Photo by: Gorta Self Help Africa

The latest merger in the development NGO sector has created one of the largest agricultural international nongovernmental organizations in the United Kingdom and Ireland — and the secret to making it work, it seems, was simple.

“If there are three things to getting it right, it’s communication, communication, communication,” said Ray Jordan, CEO of Gorta Self Help Africa, which was formed in July by uniting two Irish agricultural development organizations: Gorta and Self Help Africa.

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About the author

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    Anna Patton

    Anna Patton is a freelance journalist and media facilitator specializing in global development and social enterprise. Currently based in London, she previously worked with development NGOs and EU/government institutions in Berlin, Brussels and Dar es Salaam as well as in the U.K., and has led media projects with grass-roots communities in Uganda and Kenya. Anna has an master’s degree in European studies — specializing in EU development policy — and is a fellow of the On Purpose social enterprise program.