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Submitted: 10 December 2015 Modified: 10 February 2017
HERDIN Record #: CAR-UCBCF-15121009063394

Learning with communities : structures and mechanisms for RH programs among indigenous peoples of the Cordilleras.

Ma. Visitacion Molintas,
Erlinda C. Palaganas

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This paper presents knowledge/lessons gained from a Participatory Research,
Training/Community Education, BCC, Advocacy, Networking, and Monitoring and
Evaluation activities towards the implementation of a Community-Based Reproductive
Health (RH), Gender, Population Development Program in the Cordilleras, Northern
Philippines. It highlights the RH trail taken by the different workers: UNFPA, the LGU,
NGOs and the communities. Document review and interviews of program staff were
utilized to draw the stories of learning from the field derived from participatory me-
thods such as Group and Team Dynamic Methods, Interviewing and Dialogue Methods,
Sampling Methods, and Visualization and Diagramming Methods. The findings reveal
that the Community Needs Assessment (CNA) as baseline for integrated planning
of programme partners laid the PAR framework for the entire development process.
Guided by the integrated RH framework, the CNA ensured the relevance of data
collected, correct interpretation and analysis of data. This paved way for relevant
and meaningful plans, actions, interventions and partnerships that were truly
participatory, having gained the recognition and acceptance of communities. Commu-
nity structures-People's Organizations with Health Committees that oversee income
generating projects and RH education activities in the barangays (villages), were
formed/strengthened. Partnerships with the Barangay Councils and Barangay Health
Stations were continually enhanced to make policy formulation and service delivery
more responsive to the identified RH needs. The CNA activities and deepening RH
education built a certain level of community awareness of RH needs and rights that
spurned the project barangays to articulate and take on initiatives to address the gaps
in resources, information and services for RH. The operation of Community Based Ini-
tiatives provided community members with opportunities to access livelihood, re-
sources and services for health/RH. Sustaining their growing RH consciousness and 
strengthened capacity to access health/RH resources and services enabled them to
increasingly demand for comprehensive health service delivery, quality RH information
and services included. The strengthening of RH support network in the communities
and upgrading of local health system provided the impetus and basis to set-up mecha-
nisms for increased access to comprehensive high quality RH information and services.
This PAR illustrated several lessons/insights: that empowerment can be attained 
through the development of common knowledge and crucial awareness; it can bring
isolated people together around common problems and experiences as they collec-
tively validate their experiences; it can strengthen and valorize muted voices and de-
valued experiences as the foundation for understanding and critical reflection; and it
can facilitate negotiated knowledge and solutions to problems. To researchers, it is an
inspiring and empowering experience to grow and learn with the people.

Publication Type
Others
Place of Publication
Thailand
Publication Date
2010

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This paper presents knowledge/lessons gained from a Participatory Research,
Training/Community Education, BCC, Advocacy, Networking, and Monitoring and
Evaluation activities towards the implementation of a Community-Based Reproductive
Health (RH), Gender, Population Development Program in the Cordilleras, Northern
Philippines.

 

LocationLocation CodeAvailable FormatAvailability
Philippine Council for Health Research and Development Library Box No. 56 Fulltext