The Challenge Initiative and Zuellig Family Foundation, led by TCI OIC Chief of Party Glenn Bede Benablo, organized a 3-day The Challenge Initiative-Program Design Workshop on October 18-20 at Basilan Business Hotel, this city. The workshop was attended by the TCI City Leadership Team spearheaded by Mayor Sitti Djalia Turabin-Hataman.
According to Glenn Bede A. Benablo, Chief of Party of The Challenge Initiative, “Isabela is being considered as a global city who can effectively implement family planning programs.” Isabela City is already considered “developing” in terms of RAISE baseline assessment, which means the LGU already has a basic level of capacity in implementing family planning programs and reducing adolescents’ pregnancies. With the technical assistance from TCI, Isabela City Leadership Team shall utilize proven and readily-available high-impact interventions in reducing teenage pregnancy as well as identify innovations that are unique only to Isabela City. The TCI project shall run from 2023 to 2025.
In the workshop, Training Officer City Technical Lead Pearl Joy Catingub provided an overview of The Challenge Initiative-Philippines, and CPMDO/CNAO Jesilyn Puno followed by presenting the current state of the city’s health situation, focusing on family planning and adolescent health development programs in Isabela City.
Additionally, NCR Manager Dr. Alphonse Raphael Guevarra discussed the introduction to bridging leadership for resilient AYSRH systems.During the workshop, the participants focused on a range of objectives, including outlining the TCI Overall Strategy, articulating the use of TCI Tools, understanding the city’s current health reality, and drafting the comprehensive program design, runway, and financial plan for the upcoming years.
Mayor Turabin-Hataman expressed her strong commitment to reducing teenage pregnancy rates and enhancing family planning practices. She shared to the group how she started as a community worker advocating for reproductive health rights and emphasized her full commitment towards reducing teenage pregnancy in the city using not only the gender lens but as well as other lenses and perspectives.
The TCI-PH Training Team included City Associate Shiela Guigan, and participants from DOH-CHDZP, including DMO Bryant Labastida, SHPO Mingke Abdurahman, DMO Lea Marie Toribio, and HPA Al-Amin Alipada. Meanwhile, Basilan Provincial Board Member Ahmed Djaliv Amin Hataman briefly met and joined the team.
The workshop also included reflections from regional partners and the city leadership team on the Call to Action. The participants, including DOH-CHD ZP DMO IV Bryant Labastida, Adoloscent Sexual and Reproductive Health Program Focal Person Imelda Canete, CNAO Jesielyn Puno, Acting City Budget Officer Haiat Aira Taguranao, City Associate Shiela Guigan, and City Technical Lead Catingug, CIO/GAD Focal Person Mendry-Ann Lim, CHO Nurses Michelle Lledo, Ma. Victoria Lintag, and Maridol Dela Cruz, SWA Shaira Bapora from CSWDO, PNP-ICPS WCPD Chief PNCO PSSG Lizel Ibanez, DepEd EPS Nuayme Enriquez, and Nagdilaab Foundation Inc. Monitoring and Evaluation Officer Cecille Sequio, all committed to intensifying their advocacy efforts. (Words by SJ Asakil/Photos by M. Santos, CIO)