The funds that medica mondiale uses to support women’s projects throughout the world come from three sources.
As a charitable association, medica mondiale is largely financed by donations – this is one of the most important sources of income. Most of the donations are not given for specific projects, i.e. they are made without stating a purpose of use. This allows medica mondiale to be active even in forgotten war and crisis zones and use the funds where they are needed most. Many donors express their solidarity with this intention by making regular, long-term and unspecified donations. This enables long-term support of projects and thus sustainable changes.
In addition to donations, medica mondiale also receives funds from public authorities. Public subsidies are an indispensable contribution to the total financing. They are usually sums of money earmarked for specific projects. Essentially, they come from the German Foreign Office, the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Reconstruction Credit Institute (KfW), the governments from the individual federal states in Germany, municipalities and the European Union. Even when projects are financed by funds from public authorities, medica mondiale has to fund part of the project from its own resources.
medica mondiale is also supported by non-governmental sponsors and institutions such as foundations and other organisations in the field of development co-operation. Examples are the Sigrid Rausing Trust, the Pro Victimis Foundation and the Medicor Foundation.
Expenses for administration and advertising
medica mondiale considers it of paramount importance that responsible and trustworthy use is made of the donations and private and public subsidies it receives. Approximately 79.2 percent of total expenditure in 2017 was accounted for by international and domestic projects and the remaining 20.8 percent by administration, public relations, advertising and donor services. For comparison: In the test criteria for its seal of approval the Deutsche Zentralinstitut für soziale Fragen (German Institute for Social Issues, DZI) defines 30 percent of total spending as a ceiling for advertising and administration expenses, saying such use of funds is justifiable and effective.
With our aim of performing effective, sustainable and high-quality work, we place great value on transparency, clear rules and efficient monitoring procedures. Examples of how we put this into practice include: designated internal supervisory committees, external assessors and auditors, and constant dialogue with the public. Furthermore, we have committed ourselves to following existing rules of conduct, such as the requirements of the Initiative for a Transparent Civil Society and the Code of Conduct from VENRO (Association of German Development NGOs).
Examples of monitoring procedures
Organisational and operational management
- The Board runs the organisation. It decides on the priorities and strategies in accordance with the purpose of the association. At the Annual General Assembly, the members of the Board are held accountable for their work.
- The medica mondiale General Assembly commissions an independent auditor to check the annual accounts, which then form the basis for the organisation’s annual financial report.
- Internal project finance specialists and external auditors regularly check whether resources for international projects are being allocated and used correctly. Heads of department and the management regularly and promptly inform staff of relevant issues affecting planning, strategy, the development of the business and challenges being faced.
- Job vacancies in the Cologne office are advertised publicly.
- Detailed procurement regulations determine what all staff in the head office have to comply with when awarding contracts, making purchases or checking invoices. These provisions are designed to encourage cost-effectiveness and an economical use of the resources available. They also prevent unfair advantages and unjustified privileges when awarding contracts.
Communication and public relations:
- A detailed annual report openly reports on how resources were used and how the organisation works, including the successes and difficulties experienced. The report is sent to supporters and other recipients. It is also published on the organisation’s website.
- medica mondiale communicates with the press and public in a clear and open way, appropriate for the particular target group in question. Examples of media used to report on the organisation include the internet, fundraising letters, information materials, press releases, lectures and the regular donors’ magazine “memo”.
- Our work with war-traumatised women and girls is based on principles and quality attributes which we have developed from our project work experience. They are regularly revised and refined.
- medica mondiale sees itself as an organisation which is constantly learning. Systematic assessment and evaluation reveals any possible weaknesses and encourages learning processes.
- The quality and sustainable efficacy of our international project work is ensured by means of regular evaluation. These quality and impact checks are carried out by external experts.
- Regular project visits and standardised assessment procedures for project applications are also effective mechanisms which we use to ensure the quality of our international project work.