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Pratima Devi Rauta from indigenous community, who completed the Central School education scoring 96% marks. Receives medal from Shri Pratap Jena, Minister of School & Mass Education Govt. of Orissa
Mr Naveen Pattnaik honours a student on her educational achievements
Mr M. M. Rajendran, then Governor of Orissa, presents an award for the best networking partner
Mr. B. D. Sharma delivering a speech on tribal issues
The PREM emblem

Central to PREM's emblem is the tree which represents life and reflects PREM's mission to facilitate people to support life so that life may support people. The figures of the men and women, represent the people's organizations – the men, women, boys and girls – who come together to participate in the process of promoting life. PREM's role is to provide support and advocacy to the people's organizations so they can establish and maintain sustainable and value-based development.


PREM's vision is the creation of a new social order in which the present unorganized and marginalized people have a say in decision making, where education creates awareness and develops skills and fosters the growth of talents, where culture is ever creative, where men and women are totally liberated from all dehumanizing and oppressive forces and where the decisions of individuals and communities are based on the values of social justice,equalities, truth, freedom and the dignity of human life.

Brief History

A group of social activists, led by Jacob Thundyil and Chacko Paruvanany, initiated development programmes in 15 villages of Mohana block in the Gajapati district of Orissa in 1980. In 1984 PREM was formally registered as a voluntary organization under the Societies Registration Act. Its primary initiative was the propagation of functional literacy and such was its success that within two years the programme had been extended to a further two blocks. By the time of its registration as a non-government organization (NGO), PREM's operational area covered over 200 villages.

Along with the formation of people's and women's organizations, PREM established non-formal education programmes for educating Adivasi (tribal) children and discouraged dependence on shifting cultivation through active promotion of the concepts of agro- and social-forestry and extended its project area to include R. Udayagiri, Daringibadi, Ramanaguda, Padampur and Raikia blocks. PREM's development initiatives were next introduced among the fisher people communities at Gopalpur-On-Sea (1985), Brahmagiri (1987) and Chilika (1990) and the organization was instrumental in relief delivery programmes to its project population during the drought of 1988 and again in 1991 in Kalahandi.

PREM's inclusive approach led to the formation of a network of like-minded NGOs in 1988 and a federation of people's organizations in 1990. Innovative programmes, such as the 100% literacy campaign, were implemented in 300 villages and correspondence education was introduced to develop the skills and knowledge of activists operating at grass roots level throughout Orissa. Following the success of such programmes PREM constructed and established vocational training centres at Chandragiri in 1990 and at Mandiapalli in 1992.

Since 1996 PREM's development efforts have focused on engineering child sponsorship programmes in the tribal district of Gajapati and at Chilika Lake in Puri district, where fisher people predominate. Through its partnership with Plan International, PREM has established a multi-dimensional initiative, sponsoring the educational needs of 7,400 children in Gajapati district and 5,300 children at Chilika and addressing the development needs of their families and communities. This commitment to education and community continued as PREM introduced innovative approaches to address issues of non-admission to schools and high drop-out rates. Pre-schools were opened to inculcate the school going habit at an early stage, Bridge Courses were organized to reach young people who had dropped out of school and hostels were established to offer residential facilities to students who had no access to educational institutes in their villages. Programmes were created to provide quality English Medium education for promising students and vocational education was developed to help young people to pursue alternative and sustainable livelihoods.

In addressing the needs of its entire project population, PREM has gone on to devise and deliver programmes in the fields of health, livelihood, agriculture, food security, savings and credit, gender and good governance. Specific campaigns designed to strengthen the Adivasi, Dalit and fisher people networks, including Universal Birth Registration, Malaria Prevention and Control and Say No to Tobacco, have been organized and delivered through PREM and its network NGO partners. Projects on visual impairment and HIV/AIDS have also been introduced.

Through its experience of relief delivery in periods of drought, PREM has been able to extend its services in disaster preparedness and rehabilitation to the victims of 1998 Super Cyclone in Orissa and the 2004 Tsunami on the south-eastern coast of the Bay of Bengal.