If you work in the social sector, you’re no stranger to abbreviations. You’ve probably come across the likes of FCRA, NGO, CSO, PHC, RTI, and a personal favourite—RMNCH+A. Try saying it five times quickly, I dare you.
Since the sector has forever changed what WASH means to me, I thought I’d note down some of my own versions of everyday acronyms, altered for nonprofit life.
What it usually means: To Be Decided
What it means in the dev sector: Tax Break Dena, please!
Use case: When you have to beg the government official issuing your 80G certificate to believe that you GENUINELY. ARE. A. NONPROFIT.
What it usually means: Work In Progress
What it means in the dev sector: Waiting (for funding to come through) In Perpetuity
Use case: When you fill out all 342 pages of paperwork needed to access your donation tranche and surprise surprise, the foundation comes back to you with ‘just a few more forms’.
What it usually means: Chief Financial Officer
What it means in the dev sector: Corporate Friendly Outfit
Use case: When you have to ditch your beloved kurta-jhola-chappals trio for a pantsuit in order to be taken seriously by the MNC you have a meeting with.
What it usually means: Estimated Time of Arrival
What it means in the dev sector: Extreme Team Attrition
Use case: When an external consultant sent by your donor upends your nonprofit’s well-functioning systems and processes in order to create a ‘more serious’ work culture and your employees realise that if they’re stuck living the corporate life, they might as well get corporate salaries too.
What it usually means: Corporate Social Responsibility
What it means in the dev sector: Cold, Scathing Reply
Use case: When you’re asked whether your work is ‘so chill, na?’ from acquaintances who hear that you work in the social sector.