PRADAN is a voluntary organisation registered under the Societies Registration Act of India.

Established in Delhi in 1983, PRADAN was pioneered by a group of young professionals, all of whom were inspired by the conviction that individuals with knowledge resources and empathy for the marginalised must work with communities at the grassroots in order to help them overcome poverty.

PRADAN believes that the path towards conquering economic poverty is through enhancing the livelihood capabilities of the poor and giving them access to sustainable income earning opportunities. In the process, the poor must be enabled to break free from their past, develop an alternative vision of their future and set achievable goals. They must be equipped with the technical, organisational, negotiating, and networking skills that will facilitate the fulfillment of their goals. Our aim is to stimulate and support these poor women and men to dream of a better future and stimulate their sense of agency as they endeavour to enhance incomes, improve access to services or claim rights and entitlements.

As on, March 2015, 350 highly Motivated and skilled Professionals under PRADAN’s fold are working in the remote villages of India, immersing themselves directly with target communities. These young professionals are recruited from universities and hold degrees in subjects like management, engineering, agriculture, and the social sciences.

PRADAN professionals, divided into 57 teams, work with over 374,008 families in 5,766 villages across 7 of the poorest states in the country. A majority of the families that PRADAN works with belong to the Schedule Tribes and Schedule Castes.

Our Mission

A Just & Equitable Society

Enabling the communities to address issues such as fighting social/ political marginalization & discrimination, accessing rights & entitlements, participating in local self-governance, and taking overall charge of their own lives & society.


We believe that the people have capability, that they are worthy and can be the drivers of change.


Expanding as widening circles built around interdependence & mutuality, not ascending pyramid built as power structures.

Learn More


Stimulating and enhancing the sense of agency of collectives of poor people, especially women.

Learn More


Bringing professionals, and hence wider array of knowledge, resource networks & higher order thinking, to drive change.

Learn More


Coordinating with various stakeholders for support in pursuing the vision of enhancing quality of life in the poorest villages of the country.

Learn More

Resources and Process

Developing scalable models for and bringing path-breaking transformations to the development sector.

Learn More

PRADAN follows a four-pronged approach to achieve its goals:

Promoting and nurturing Self-Help Groups (SHGs) of poor women and strengthening them as organisations to leverage institutional finances for members’ livelihoods.
Developing and introducing locally suitable economic activities to increase productivity and incomes among SHG members; building synergic collaboration with a wide variety of stakeholders.
Mobilising finances for livelihood assets and infrastructure from government bodies, donors, banks, and other financial institutions.
Setting up mechanisms to sustain the livelihood gains made by the poor communities.
Challenged by the abysmal poverty of millions of people across India, PRADAN has resolved to reach out to 1.5 million poor people in the next 10 years as a part of its vision, PRADAN 2017.