In a situation of financial crisis the world needs the support of new donors to sustain the growth in developing countries. As a re-emerging donor Russia can seize this opportunity to prove that it is a reliable international partner that meets its various commitments in development assistance.
Comparison of the Russian and Polish development assistance reveals that Russia might be under-utilizing the capacity of NGOs in international development assistance. NGOs have proven to be an inherent part of the development assistance in Poland, where the level of self-organisation of NGOs is relatively high and consultations with civil society and grant competitions for NGOs are institutionalised.
New donors can rely on NGOs to develop national capacity in international development aid provision, to contribute to the greater effectiveness of the system, to promote public awareness on the issue and to contribute to creation of the positive image of donor country in recipient societies. Recommendations to the Russian government and the community of Russian NGOs are presented.