Aurora Province, Philippines, 4 Feb 2012. Nineteen men and women from four civil society groups in Aurora Province, Philippines took part in a two-day strategic communication planning workshop in Baler, the province’s capital, February 3 to 4.
The workshop is an ACFJ outreach project under Press Freedom 2.0, a project of an alliance of Dutch NGOs seeking to enhance the media’s role in governance and democracy.
The four NGOs are Justice and Peace Action Group (JPAG), Kalinga, Pamana and Bataris Foundation. Bataris hosted the activity at its headquarters in Baler. Beaver Flores, faculty of the Ateneo Department of Communication is workshop facilitator. A graduate of development communication, Flores teaches social marketing, among other subjects.
“It is high time that we learn more about how to bring across our messages in a systematic way,” said Elmer Dayson, vice-chair of Pamana, a human rights NGO. A good communication strategy will help us coordinate our efforts and push our advocacies forward, he explained.
The activity opens a communication skills training program seeking to build and upgrade the communication capability of the four NGOs. Training on the use of visual, broadcast, print and online media for advocacy will take place in the next months.
On the workshop’s first day, the various groups articulated goals of expanding the reach of their information, persuasion and alliance-building activities to reach organizational goals such as the advocacy of human rights, alternative health interventions, and fair and just development programs.
The four NGOs are expected to craft a full-blown strategic communication plan to reach specific goals in 2012.
The workshop is one of two components of Press Freedom 2.0. The other component, Panglantaw Mindanaw: Visual stories from Mindanawans, aims to profile Mindanao stories and issues through multimedia stories produced by Mindanao photojournalists.
Aurora Province is located in the east-central side of Luzon Island. Eight municipalities comprise the province, among which is Casiguran, the site of Aurora Pacific Economic Zone and Free Port Authority (Apeco) project. VBV