“…actively assist and encourage national information services, educational institutions and other governmental and nongovernmental organizations of all kinds interested in spreading information about the United Nations. For this and other purposes, it should operate a fully equipped reference service, brief or supply lecturers, and make available its publications, documentary films, film strips, posters and other exhibits for use by these agencies and organizations.”
Ever since then, the NGOs have continued to play a key role in bringing the work of the United Nations to people around the world. In 1968, the Economic and Social Council, by Resolution 1297 (XLIV) of 27 May, called on DPI to associate NGOs, bearing in mind the letter and spirit of its Resolution 1296 (XLIV) of 23 May 1968, which stated that an NGO "...shall undertake to support the work of the United Nations and to promote knowledge of its principles and activities, in accordance with its own aims and purposes and the nature and scope of its competence and activities".
The association of NGOs is based on their commitment to uphold the principles of the UN, support the Organization’s activities and spread the word about issues on its agenda, while maintaining their independence and staying true to their own core values. With the passage of time, the relationship between DPI and NGOs has grown stronger and more important; Member States continue to recognize the benefits of NGO participation locally, regionally and internationally, and have expressed their willingness to assist and accommodate the work of NGOs as reflected in the 2005 World Summit Outcome Document. Since then, NGO global involvement in international issues, consultations, policy making and conferences is much more visible, accepted and recognized. The UN too has continued to actively engage the NGO community, and within DPI that relationship is fostered and nurtured by NGO Relations, in the Department’s Outreach Division.