Nonprofits in Sri Lanka

NGO and Charity Social Media Usage – Part 2

Effective use of Social Media by United Nations Organization, Sri Lanka

Continuing with our NGO and charity social media usage analysis, we now look at the United Nations organizations. The local branches of United Nations, an international organization composed of most of the countries of the world, which was founded in 1945 to promote peace, security, and economic development, has successfully utilized social media and following are some examples of their effective use of the modern digital mediums.

One of the best things about  Facebook is that it allows you to share different types of content such as texts, videos and pictures enabling you to share content from different platforms and mediums while also directing traffic to other online mediums used by you such as your main website, Youtube channel or Twitter account.

United Nations Facebook


Organizations like UNSriLanka, UNICEFSriLanka, UNDPSriLanka take maximum advantage of these features offered by Facebook and keep their page interesting and current by frequently updating a great mix of content. They represent the organization’s mission and the type of work they do by telling their story through pictures and videos while balancing them with hard data for anyone looking for more details and related information.

Organizations like UNICEF and United Nations Sri Lanka has made use of not just Facebook but all major social media platforms such as Twitter and Youtube to achieve their objectives through intelligent content strategies.

For example UNICEF Sri Lanka’s channel on Youtube has many localized PSA’s, commercials, documentaries, and other interesting videos available in all three major languages used in the country.



Rubella – Sinhala PSA : Let sleeping demons, sleep… National Immunization Campaign 2011


Never before has the tools of visual story telling been so inexpensive, easy to use and most importantly accessible to all. UN Sri Lanka has utilized these tools combining them with strategic content to convey their stories with genuineness, passion and humility

United Nations Sri Lanka Facebook

UNICEF’s facebok page has shared a video of a family with a child who has autism from their official Youtube channel. With a description that reads “My son’s name is Malintha Perera. He is 17 years old. He was diagnosed with non-verbal autism when he was a small baby. I have loved and reared him the way I would any child. He can get ready by himself and even helps me in the kitchen. My husband and I are all he has. What will happen to him when we are no longer here?”Gayani Perera, Pilimathalawa
Share this if you feel for her!”

This is a great example of how story telling can be used to convey a message, reach out and connect with the audience. This particular post has received a significantly higher number of Likes and shares than other content recently posted on their Facebook page.  Compelling content such as the video above will not only motivate individuals to care and empathize but also drive them to take action.

Habitat for Humanity hfhsl and Every Drop Matters everydropmatterssrilanka each focusing on one area of interest have also managed to use social media to help build a community of volunteers and supporters to help their cause.


 Habitat for Humanity Sri Lanka Facebook

Posts such as the one above depict the relationship these organizations have managed to build through the use of social media. Those followers tuning in to the live feed are most likely the same crowd that’s willing to donate or support a cause. So it is extremely important to let followers and donors know how and what kind of impact their support has made and it will put into perspective what they were able to accomplish with such information and  a quick gesture of kindness.

Initiatives such as Every Drop Matters and organizations such as UN Volunteers has used social media to thank their volunteers using creative techniques.  Acknowledging their support, especially on social media where all their friends can see will surely be appreciated and chances are their friends might also get motivated to like and follow the organization, further promoting and spreading their cause.


UN 6


A video tribute to the volunteers of the twinning school programme on UN Volunteers Sri Lanka’s Facebook page

 UN 7


While Youtube supports visual content and Facebook works well with all types of content, Twitter is great for short bursts of information. Local United Nations Organizations such as  UNSriLanka , UNVSriLanka, and UNDPSriLanka have embraced Twitter to carry out their awareness, communications and PR tasks.

United Nations Sri Lanka Twitter

They use Twitter to engage followers on issues of global poverty, environment and other human interest in general by publicizing advocacy events as well as interesting facts and important statistics. They also use their Twitter to post vacancies and recruit volunteers. They have effectively made use of hash tags and are current and consistent with their updates.

The United Nations Organization has found success in social media by posting interactive, compelling posts, giving timely updates, responding to followers and consistently updating content which are all key contributing factors not only to get more likes but also to turn those likes into loyal followers and advocates of a cause.

Local Nonprofits using Social Media

Some great examples of inspiring local non-profits that have integrated social media into their overall marketing and communication plan are ECO-V Eco Friendly Volunteers, Jananam Foundation and Sri Lanka Federation of Youth Clubs.

Eco- V Friendly Volunteers have an open facbook group which is very active. A unique feature of this group is that the content is regularly updated not just by the group but also by their supporters and volunteers.  The group recruits volunteers, creates awareness on environmental issues and promotes their off-line projects, campaigns and activities through Facebook. They have also used their Facebook page to support and keep in touch with other organizations in the local area which has similar interest.

Eco V even has its own blog  in which they have many interesting articles on projects and events done by them. These blog posts are full of colorful images that unfold the stories behind the many events, projects and campaigns organized by them, which is a great way to draw people in and give them the hard facts in a compelling way.

Eco V Facebook


jananamfoundation is another great example of a local nonprofit effectively utilizing social media. The page has over 3000 likes and active users. This organization is a group of volunteers who participate in various causes and their approach of marketing is cutting through the clutter and delivering the bigger picture of the foundation by using many images and a few text, which judging by the number of likes in their posts seems to be a very good strategy that works well for them.


In order to choose the right social media tool and to understand the best content strategy it is important to know your audience and how best to connect with them. And we can see through these examples that both Eco – V Friendly Volunteers and Jananam Foundation has successfully implemented the right strategies that suit their organizations’, its mission and also their audience.



 Jananam Facebook


Sri Lanka Federation of Youth Clubs follows a similar approach to Jananam Foundation and has an active Facebook page slyouthfederation with many posts receiving a significant number of likes and comments from their followers.

SL Youth Federation Facebook


Through this analysis it is clear that social media solutions is becoming a must have tool for NGO and charity organizations. Whether it is to raise awareness and funds, reach new constituents and supporters, or to build a community of passionate volunteers’, online networking and powerful content can make a huge impact on an organization’s work and positively change the way it connects, recruits and functions.

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