Social organizations refer to social institutions that are established to serve a specified task usually in the interest of the society at large. Over the years social organizations and groups have played important role in enlightening and mobilizing individuals over various issues facing the society hence contributing to society transformation. In the United States, these groups have significantly influenced the way of life as well as governance.
American association of retired persons (AARP) is one of the leading global organizations whose purpose constitutes promotion of positive social change in society. It was founded in 1958 at a time when the elderly experienced a lot of difficulties while acquiring life insurance. John Rother, the organization’s vice president for policy, strategy and international affairs, approximates the number of members aged fifty and above to be over four million (AARP, 2010).
This organization does not approach aging as a negative component in the society but analyses the world ageing demographics as the driving force to enhance transformation of the social policy that aim at improving the quality of life among people of all generations and all ages (AARP, 2010).
The organization supports and promotes the ageing process all over the world through encouraging aging members to reside in places that promote decent living with affordable housing and accessible services, empowering and encouraging individuals to maintain their health and productivity, as well as promoting policies that provide healthy older people with opportunities to continue contributing towards the work force (AARP, 2010).
This helps the older generation to maintain a source of income and provides diversity in the labor market. The organization further believes improved standards of living are directly related to longer lifespan.
AARP provides an opportunity in which diverse societies can share the challenges and opportunities encountered as the members advance in age (AARP, 2010). The organization deals with issues that relate to improvement of the overall welfare of the population that is advancing in term of age and advocates for issues such as the elderly population access to affordable health care.
In addition, the organization advocates for availability of retirement security through pension schemes as well as ensuring a firm background for traditional informal support system and creating effective policies around the global aging agenda (AARP, 2010).
Improved welfare among the elderly people in the society is associated with economic growth, social equity in distribution of resources as well as ecological maintenance and preservation which are the key pillars of overall development in any society (AARP, 2010). AARP is a secondary social group whose functions are geared towards achieving high quality of life among the population. The organization has significantly transformed the attitude of Americans towards old age.
National association for the advancement of colored people (NAACP) is a civil rights organization that diligently fights for the social justice of the minority groups in America. It was founded in 1909 and it’s the largest of its kind in the United States (NAACP, 2010). Ever since 1941, the organization has been the driving force behind civil rights advocacy in the United States.
The organization spearheaded the enactment of 1964 civil rights act, the voting rights passed in 1965, and the1968 fair housing act among other achievements. It aims at promoting voting and voter education among the youth as a way of airing their preferences as well as promoting voting rights (NAACP, 2010).
The organization further focuses on diverse issues such as climate change facing the country e.g. the hurricane Katrina. It has established climate justice initiative that was created for the purpose of mobilizing and educating people on the climate issue to enable them address the problem of climate change facing the society (NAACP, 2010). The organization has also devised mechanisms to uplift civil and human rights as they relate to economic opportunities (NAACP, 2010).
It aims at ensuring that there is just and fair allocation of resources as the country embarks on a road towards economic recovery. It further promotes national education program by ensuring that American students have access to equal and high quality public education by discouraging racial and ethnic disparities prevalent in public institutions (NAACP, 2010). This organization is also a secondary social group whose aim is promoting the rights of the minority groups in America.
Bureaucratic Characteristics of Organizations
The above bureaucratic organizations are characterized by division of labor where all tasks are classified into highly specialized fields which are allocated to qualified personnel (Lunenburg, 2007). The organizations also have an outlined hierarchy of authority that flows from the board of directors to the employees through senior staff.
Bureaucracies are characterized by Impersonality (Lunenburg, 2007) which checks favorism and prejudice among staff members. In these institutions, recruitment, employment and promotions are based on competence and qualification and every task in the organizations is governed by outlined rules to ensure uniformity.
However, extensive division of labor kills innovation and promotes monotony. Reliance to rules in these structures often results in inertia and rigidity and the organizations practically promote downward communication only.
Social groups play an important role in the society as they strive to ensure that the rights of individuals are not violated against. To ensure their effectiveness, the government and the society should support them in their activities. However, the organization should minimize bureaucratic procedures in order to achieve better results.
Lunenburg, F. E. & Ornstein, A. C (2007). Educational administration: Concepts and practices, NY: Cengage learning publishers.
NAACP (2010). Advocacy and issues. Official website. Retrieved October 19, 2010 from http://www.naacp.org/programs/
Rother, J. (2010). Aging as a global issue. AARP. Retrieved October 19, 2010 from http://www.aarpinternational.org/resourcelibrary/resourcelibrary_show.htm?doc_id=1364350