At one time this community was called "Paraiyar," which is considered a derisive name with reference to slavery. British colonialists did not want any people group under their watch to be considered slaves, so they changed the name to Adi Dravida.
According to one hypothesis, this community was once associated with drumming. They might have drummed at important events like festivals, weddings and funerals. As their population increased, they had to take up other jobs that were considered "unclean," since they had low caste status.
Most Adi Dravida people live in India's southern states, especially Tamil Nadu, but over a million of them live in northern Sri Lanka.
The Adi Dravida of Sri Lanka are a low status community. The word 'Adi' means 'beginning'. Whether in India or Sri Lanka, most Adi Dravida people hold low-paying, low status jobs.
Their literacy level is said to be less than 50 percent, so the gospel message should be given in oral form also. They speak Tamil, which is a major language in southern India and northern Sri Lanka. There are many gospel oriented materials in this language.
There was an effort in the 1890s to convert them en masse to Buddhism. This didn't work. Today there are now many Christians from this community in India, but only a few in Sri Lanka. They are mainly Hindus who have their own set of favorite gods.
The Adi Dravida people need to be given the opportunity to get the education they need to excel in the 21st century.
* Pray for believers among the Adi Dravidas in India to go to their cousins in Sri Lanka with the gospel.
* Pray for spiritual hunger and discernment for the Adi Dravida people.
* Pray for a disciple making movement to emerge among them in both countries.
|Profile Source: Keith Carey|
|Global Prayer Digest: 2010-09-26|
|People Name General||Adi Dravida|
|People Name in Country||Adi Dravida|
|Population in Sri Lanka||1,349,000|
|Pioneer Workers Needed||26|
|Progress Scale||1 ●|
|Alternate Names||Adi Dravidar, Chakkiliyan, Harijan, Harijans, Madiga, Mala, Parayan, Pariyar, Samban, आदि ड्रॅविडा|
|National Bible Society||Website|
|Persecution Rank||45 (Open Doors top 50 rank, 1 = highest persecution ranking)|
|Specialized Website||South Asia Peoples|
|Primary Language||Tamil (1,349,000 speakers)|
|Language Code||tam Ethnologue Listing|
|Language Written||Yes ScriptSource Listing|
|People Groups||Speaking Tamil|
Primary Language: Tamil
|Bible Translation ▲||Status (Years)|
|Bible-New Testament||Yes (1715-1998)|
|Possible Print Bibles|
|Amazon||National Bible Societies|
|Forum of Bible Agencies||World Bible Finder|
|Gospel Go||World Bibles|
|Resource Type ▲||Resource Name|
|Audio Recordings||Audio Bible teaching (GRN)|
|Audio Recordings||Fathers Love Letter|
|Audio Recordings||General Ministry Resources|
|Audio Recordings||Online New Testament (FCBH)|
|Audio Recordings||Online Scripture (Talking Bibles)|
|Audio Recordings||Oral Bible|
|Audio Recordings||Story of Jesus audio (Jesus Film Project)|
|Film / Video||Following Jesus (India, JF Project)|
|Film / Video||General Ministry Resources|
|Film / Video||God's Story Video|
|Film / Video||Jesus Film: view in Tamil|
|Film / Video||Magdalena (Jesus Film Project)|
|Film / Video||My Last Day (Jesus Film Project Anime)|
|Film / Video||Story of Jesus for Children (JF Project)|
|General||God's Simple Plan|
|General||Got Questions Ministry|
|Mobile App||Download Bible from Google Play Store|
|Text / Printed Matter||Bible|
|Text / Printed Matter||Bible: Old Version Bible|