Skip to main content

They Do Not Come Out in the Papers


It’s amazing why a few good things, though how phenomenal they are, do not get printed in our newspapers while all the mudslinging, dirty politics, and boxing matches do. It’s also quite spectacular why a public official who inaugurates a building gets full media treatment (read: words, sounds, and pictures) but not when a non-governmental organization was able to strengthen the livelihood of 536 rural poor households.

Last Friday (15 February), I presented an independent evaluation report on a project implemented by the Soil and Water Conservation Foundation in four Eskaya communities in the towns of Duero, Guindulman, Sierra Bullones, and Pilar and in 8 other barangays within Sierra Bullones. The project was successful in increasing the income of around 345 rural households, from below 2,000 monthly gross income to 2,500 and more. It also made possible the strengthening of 12 community associations, most of which currently have more than P70,000 of capital build up (from almost nothing) to continue their different livelihood projects.

The evaluation report concluded that the project has afforded beneficiary communities with the chances to increase income, improve well being, reduce vulnerability against livelihood shocks, achieve a certain degree of food security, and manage their resources sustainably. These opportunities could not have been made available to these communities without the project and may have taken a longer time to develop.

But news such like these do not come out in the papers. NGOs like SWCF do not have PR people who write news stories every week, and the media may have not regarded these as stories that sell. In print media, as it is elsewhere, there is always the marginalization of the people at the periphery, that their plight, much more their achievements, become virtually insignificant.

Comments

Anonymous said…
yes, the same thing happened to ELAC (Environmental Legal Assistance Center). Even if there were suggestions to come up with PRs or LTEs at least once a month, still, it did not materialize. this is probably because ELAC & SWCF & most other NGOs are not comfortable "lifting their own chair" so to speak. it would be a fright if NGOs start getting comfortable with it. this is also probably because NGOs have a different dynamism or "culture" or whatever you'd like to call it compared to government or other mainstream organizations. and i think NGOs are more results/impacts oriented. it's a classic example of an analogy of two brands of potato chips snack. the first one, although not a known brand, but is really full of chips. while the other is just a bag full of air whose label and packaging only promises more chips inside but does not actually have them.

Popular posts from this blog

What is the Church's Business in the Dauis Renaissance Program?

Introduction This paper presents an analysis, in financial perspective, of the details of the agreement entered into by parties 1) The Bishop of Tagbilaran, 2) Beatriz Susanna Zobel de Ayala, 3) Dauis Renaissance Company, Inc. and signed on June 24, 2008 in Dauis, Bohol, Philippines. As the agreement is vague in some respects, figure computations were interpreted on the basis of its implications to financial statements of the “Dauis Renaissance Company”, both currently and prospectively. The paper is structured in three parts. The first section analyses the facts of the agreement and its implication on assets, equities, and net income projections. The relevant provisions of the agreement are cited side by side with the analysis. The second section represents the general independent appraisal of the author on the “Dauis Renaissance Company”, taking collectively all the facts mentioned in the first section. The annex section presents a list of important financial terms which are defin

The Problem with Representative Democracy

The Bohol Chronicle reported today (27 December 2009) that the Sangguniang Panlalawigan has given a go-signal for the governor of the province of Bohol to sign a joint venture and development agreement (JVDA) with Oasis Leisure Islands Development Inc. (OLIDI) to reclaim at least 450 hectares by building 5 islets at Panglao Bay. The provincial lawmakers believed that the proposal was advantageous to the government, as it will not spend any single peso for the project, from its inception to implementation. Interestingly, the Bohol Chronicle reported that Vice Governor Herrera stressed that "Several discussions have been made and the SP met with the proponents many times. Concerns of each board member have been satisfactorily answered." I was appalled. It seems that the Sangguniang Panlalawigan members have not read the proposal in its entirety. I wonder if they could answer questions if reporters will ask them for the details of the proposal. I wonder

Impress me, Convince me: A Call to Those Opposing the RH Bill

Two friends of mine sipped coffee at Bo’s after what to them was a disappointing forum on the RH bill sponsored by the local Catholic Church. They were amazed by the lack of information, the drought of reason, and the argumentum ad misericordiam employed by those who said that the RH bill should be junked. The lady, mother of two, asked, “Why should an intellectual forum on a bill be reduced to an attack to our conscience? Why does the church have to repeat all over and over again that to kill is bad?” His companion replied, “I do not really see the point. I have not seen a provision there that says that the bill can be made responsible for deaths of unborn children. I do not really know what they are objecting about.” “Impress me, convince me.” These were the words that echoed in my mind when I heard the conversation. I heard it first in a reality show looking for fresh new talents, shouted by one of the three judges at a contestant doing an interpretation of Stevie Wonder’s ‘