What is NGO?
An NGO, or Non-Governmental Organization, is an organization that exists independently from government and for-profit sectors and serves the public good.
NGOs can be divided into categories based on the activities they preform. The two most common distinctions are between NGOs that are focused on development and those that are focused on generating advocacy. However, it is important to note that these categories are not mutually exclusive as a single NGO may engage in both development and advocacy activities.  
Their orientation also acts as a distinguishing factor, rendering them either charitable, service orientation, participatory and empowering. To see a video discussing these distinctions, check out the video, Understanding the Types of NGOs. 

Emerging from human rights initiatives, the UN Charter and the Declaration of Human Rights and, more generally, from the concept of global connection and international communities, NGOs have become prominent fixtures in our globalized world.
Generally observed as being in the business of aid, NGOs support moral causes, in the service of the public good, assisting in everything from international development to spreading information and generating awareness.

Because their roles are numerous, defining exactly what an NGO is and how it works is challenging, however, in referencing an accepted definition provided by the World Bank, we can come to better understand what an NGO is and does:
"The World Bank usually speaks of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) by which it means NPOs and community-based organizations (CBOs) that are (i) entirely or largely independent of government; (ii) not operated for profit; and (iii) exist to serve humanitarian, social or cultural interests, either of their memberships or of society as a whole. (World Bank, 1996)."
Opportunities with NGOs
Volunteer abroad

   1.  Volunteer
  Costa Rica  India  Ecuador   
Fight Poverty  
  2.  Donate 
If the world's tragedies happened in North America, they would be front page news.  
Project Management

   3. Education
Make a global impact.   
Tackling Taboos with "Meet Mr. Toilet" 

Meet Mr Toilet
One of the best advocacy videos I have ever seen, "Meet Mr. Toilet" tackles the toilet taboo head on.