The way IOGT International works, creates social goods for the benefit of society. The IOGT way is to lead by example in order to deliver transformative change. This heart-driven work towards achieving change, is guided by four basic principles.

4 Principles

We work for providing opportunities and environments for all people to thrive and live up to their full potential. Our community work and advocacy seek to create the conditions for all people to lead happier, healthier, richer and freer lives. This heart-driven work towards achieving change, is guided by four basic principles.

Harnessing Potential

  • Develop life skills, critical thinking and self-esteem.
  • Enable literacy about corporate consumerism.
  • Empower children and youth to form their own lifestyle choices.
  • Build capacities to be active citizens.
  • Provide safe, enabling and creative environments where people of all ages, and especially children and youth can live up to their full potential.

Support Families

  • Provide help and support for children of addicted parents.
  • Educate parents in crucial issues of youth culture, increasing their understanding for children and young people.
  • Provide help and service to women and children who suffer from alcohol-related violence.
  • Empower women to take charge of their own and their family’s fortune, to believe in their capacities.

Strengthen Communities

  • Run grass-roots projects in urban and in rural areas where alcohol and other drugs are major problems.
  • Campaign for more environments free from alcohol and other drugs, so that children and young people also have access to public resources, to nightlife and to meaningful leisure time activities.
  • Advocate for evidence-based, cost-effective and high-impact policy solutions.
  • Conduct prevention programs that protect children and youth, and reconcile different groups in conflict areas.

Develop Societies

  • Promote well-being of citizens, economic prosperity and democracy through alcohol and narcotic drugs policy advocacy.
  • Campaign for population responses to alcohol-related epidemics of infectious diseases such as tuberculosis and HIV/ AIDS, NCDs, and gender-based violence.
  • Empower and enable civil society to engage with and contribute to political processes that do impact their livelihoods.

Creating Social Goods

IOGT International, together with its global network of Member Organizations, works to prevent, reduce and curb all aspects of harm caused by alcohol and other drugs. Often alcohol and other drugs are obstacles to health and well-being, sustainable development, economic productivity and prosperity, and the enjoyment of Human Rights.

The work of IOGT International not only addresses alcohol and other drugs as obstacles to social goods, but also aims to provide a number of social goods, through advocacy and community work:

  • Capacity building and empowerment through Non-formal education

The IOGT way is to conduct our activities based on the principles of Non-formal education. As a matter of fact, we did Non-formal education before it was a widely used concept and approach.

We believe that every single participant has something to contribute to enrich and empower the entire and stimulate the whole community. Together, we create vast opportunities to develop values, hone skills, harness potential and build competencies. Those abilities include interpersonal, team, organisational and conflict management competencies, as wells intercultural awareness, leadership, planning, organising, co-ordination and practical problem solving skills.

IOGT activities and environments are unique in their mixture of family atmosphere, multicultural and  international context, fostering diversity. The IOGT way is to foster self-esteem through mutual understanding. We believe that people develop themselves when they get the chance to embrace others and in doing so grow themselves, build their organization and shape a world equality and peace.

  • Counselling, treatment and rehabilitation services

Addiction is a massive problem is communities around the world and IOGT works heart-driven to provide concealing, treatment and rehabilitation to prevent addictions and to reduce related harms.

Effective counselling, treatment and rehabilitation will lead to personal development of not only the addicted person but also of the family and community around them. The IOGT way is to facilitate personal growth by empowering to take back the responsibility for one’s own life and to take charge of one’s role in the community. Regaining responsibility can lead to getting engaged in help, assistance and support for others affected by addiction or to find tasks in other community activities.

The IOGT way is to conduct treatment interventions as a catalyst for transformative change, which activates self-determination to solve the problems created by substance use and empowers to take back responsibility for one’s own life.

  • Alcohol-free environments that are safe and enabling, inclusive and diverse

The environments that IOGT is able to create and provide for our activities and events are unique in their combination of safety and assurance, as well as creativity and empowerment.

Alcohol-free environments in the IOGT setting are truly inclusive and therefore become diverse. Everyone is welcome to join and doesn’t encounter obstacles to participation.

The IOGT way is to create environments that build on international and multiculturalencounters, study sessions and workshops – where the participants take responsibility for educating one another, on topics relevant to them and their communities.

  • Capacity building opportunities in: leadership, entrepreneurship, and advocacy

Everyone is welcome in IOGT. And everyone is free to try and take responsibility: to start a project, arrange an event, roll out a campaign, or conduct advocacy.

In IOGT we create a culture that welcomes new ideas and enables people to try new approaches. We encourage risk-taking and support each other in doing so.

The IOGT way is to encourage, empower and support our members in following their passions and make things happen. Everyone is welcome to take over leadership roles, to grow with that responsibility and to learn-by-doing.

  • Social innovation and social entrepreneurship

Throughout our proud history, IOGT members have generated social innovations. When few others did: We built libraries so that also workers, people from lower socio-economic classes could access literature and culture; we welcomed women and advocate for Women’s voting rights; we welcomed people of color and advocated for their civic rights; or we started international development work before many others did.

Social innovation is ingrained in our DNA. It’s what we strive to generate. Together, our Member Organizations have come up with the world’s most innovative prevention approach – to name just one recent example.

The IOGT way is to encourage social innovation by honing critical thinking and ensuring that we are well-anchored in communities and societies around the world. We foster exchange beyond borders and thus allow for ideas to meet, interact and generate impactful innovations.

  • Community readiness and resilience

IOGT International and our Member Organizations are well-anchored in the communities we work in. Our members often live in those communities. The starting for our work is to ensure that communities do have the capacity to implement programs, policies and other changes that are designed to foster change and development. Often harm caused by alcohol and other drugs is a massive obstacle.

The IOGT way is to use community-based approaches and social mapping to assess community readiness and consequently empower the community to generate specific solutions for their specific problems.

The IOGT way is to strengthen communities: we help build and develop resilient communities that sustained have the ability to utilize available resources to respond to, withstand, and recover from adverse situations.

  • Active citizenship

IOGT International is a global social movement empowering our members to be active citizens in their communities and societies. Democracy and active participation are key values that permeate everything IOGT does.

In IOGT, we create a culture of transparency, accountability and openness to allow democratic participation from bottom-up to thrive.

The IOGT way is to create environments where our members can practice advocacy, can train debating and hone the skills needed to be an active citizen. This enables them to take active part in the decision-making processes in their communities and societies at large, to hold decision-makers accountable and to act as agents of change.

Delivering Transformative Change

IOGT International delivers transformative change. We do this in a number of ways:

  1. We deliver change by envisioning a better world and working heart-driven towards that vision. All to often is transformative change compromised by over-reliance short-term, opportunistic gains. To deliver transformative and lasting change needs heart-driven work towards a bold vision.
  2. We disseminate the latest information on global, regional and sometimes national policy developments. This way we provide IOGT members – our agents for change – with essential insight into the policy-making processes and empower them to get involved.
  3. We actively contribute to political deliberations and decision-making processes. We communicate clear messages to the right recipient, at the right time. And we empower our members to do the same, this way creating a movement. This includes communication via a variety of media channels and at key events.
  4. We provide a platform of opportunities for our Member Organizations to be actively engaged with global and regional political processes that shape their countries and communities. We inspire our membership to engage in the same political processes with their unique perspectives to contribute with the most comprehensive solutions from a global as well as a community perspective. We do so via policy debates, consultations and stakeholder dialogues.
  5. We cooperate effectively with key stakeholders – primarily the UN Institutions, such as the WHO, UNDP, UNAIDS, and UN Women. But we also collaborate with regional political institutions in the European Union, the African Union, the East African Community, and ASEAN. We also work hand in hand with national politicians and officials, academia and the research community, NGOs, and broader cross-sectoral civil society.
  6. We strengthen NGOs to get involved in decision-making process with their unique expertise and perspective, by building their capacity, mentoring and inspring them.

Leading By Example

We stand for the lifestyle of the 21st century – active, committed and heart-driven citizens who lead by example. IOGT International and our Member Organizations lead and promote a lifestyle free from alcohol and other drugs, enjoying a rich and free, happy and healthy life – together. It’s what we call Life Set Free. Members of IOGT International promote the values we stand for by their own example, through every day actions: We lead by example in two ways:

  • Promoting a healthy and holistic lifestyle

The lifestyle of the 21st century is about living free from alcohol and other drugs. But it doesn’t stop there. A richer and freer lifestyle is not only about the absence of harmful substances and behaviors. A richer and freer life is also about how to endow it with meaning and live up to one’s full potential – it’s about dreams, opportunities, community, choices and commitment. That’s what we call Life Set Free.

Members of IOGT International promote that approach by their own lifestyle choices. We say:

The lifestyle of the 21st century is all about leading a self-determined life, a fulfilled life, a conscious and compassionate life and a healthy life – dedicated to making the world a better place through our own actions every day and in community with our fellow humans, locally and globally.

  • Citizenship not consumerism

Leading by example in the IOGT way, is about the community, because true leadership for a better world builds on the skills and dreams of the community, not just the individual. Leadership in the IOGT way starts with the question: What can we do for the community and how can we positively impact the community? It’s about heart-driven commitment to play our part and to lead by example in order to inspire.

In IOGT International we believe that we realize our full potential best together, in the public realm shaping the world, not in the supermarket, alone, consuming the world.

In IOGT International, we believe that human beings are freer together than on their own.

We hold that human beings are freer as citizens in public squares than as consumers in private malls.