About Us

ADRA Asia Regional Office (ARO) is based in Bangkok, Thailand and was established to provide administrative and programmatic support to the 16 implementing country offices in south, southeast and northeast Asia. The support includes strategic planning, financial system establishment and monitoring, organizational development, program design and development, program evaluation and human resource development.

ARO promotes professional growth of the individual and the organization; and assists country offices in adapting state-of-the-art industry practices.  ARO liaises with donors and ADRA country offices worldwide to promote development in South Asia, Southeast Asia and Northeast Asia; and to help attract funding for the implementing country offices.

History of ADRA

ADRA Around the World The Adventist Development and Relief Agency ( ADRA ) was established in November 1956 by the Seventh-day Adventist Church to provide humanitarian relief and welfare. Originally called Seventh-day Adventist Welfare Service or SAWS, the name was changed to Seventh-day Adventist World Service in 1973. By 1958, SAWS reported relief shipments to 22 countries with a total value of about $485,000. Four years later, the number of countries had increased to 29, with a total value of $2.3 million in shipments. During this period, countries benefited included those in South America and the Middle East , sites of major disasters. By the mid-1970s, the organization began to broaden its mission from disaster relief into programs leading to long-term development. In 1983 SAWS underwent yet another name change to better reflect its overall mission and activities, becoming the “Adventist Development and Relief Agency” ( ADRA ). ADRA ‘s work grew rapidly with major programs in several countries emphasizing community development, food distribution, institutional development, and ongoing disaster relief. From an initial worldwide staff of approximately 600, ADRA ‘s activities soon included: building health clinics in Africa , assisting hurricane victims in Central America , teaching hygiene and health to children in Asia , and promoting awareness of worldwide humanitarian needs through ADRA ‘s Global Village in the United States . ADRA is currently one of the leading non-governmental relief organizations in the world. In 1997 the Agency was granted General Consultative Status by the United Nations, a unique opportunity giving ADRA added voice in the international community. In 1998 alone it assisted more than 18 million people with more than US$133 million in aid. More than 4,000 ADRA staff members currently work in more than 120 countries worldwide. As new challenges and needs arise, ADRA continues to strive to realize its mission of reflecting God’s love through compassionate acts of humanitarian service.