Kiangan pilots community-based monitoring system

Dan B. Codamon

KIANGAN, Ifugao (10 May) -- In line with the localization of the Millennium Development Goals, this municipality has adopted the community-based monitoring system (CBMS) as a strategy to achieve full development and prosperity.

The CBMS was developed as an aid in its effort to provided policy makers with a regular and frequent source of information on the possible impacts of macroeconomic adjustment policies on the household and individuals, particularly those to the vulnerable groups.

Introduced and carried out of a grant from the International Development Research Center (IDRC) based in Ottawa, Canada, it is now a joint project of Social Watch Philippines, Action for Economic Reform, NOVIB of Oxfam, Netherlands and the UNDP.

This system is considered more comprehensive and people participative as data actually emanates from the grassroots compared with the minimum basic need survey earlier introduced which it now plans to replace.

The CBMS also seeks to provide an organized system collecting information for policy makers and program implementers at all geopolitical levels, up-to-date information on the welfare status and needs at the community and household levels, a tool in monitoring and evaluating the impact of projects and programs and a tool for better local governance.

As a system it entails the participation of people in the community to collect, process and use the data as it provides information on the welfare condition of all members of the community thus its main task is to generate data on a pre-determined core set of indicators at the barangay level.

The indicators will define the basic criteria for attaining a decent quality of life and corresponds to the minimum basic needs covering health, nutrition, housing, water and sanitation, basic education, income, employment and peace and order.

Other relevant indicators to a particular community may supplement this set of indicators and these will help explain the observed trends in the welfare status of the community.

Also the information gathered from these indicators will serve as inputs to data banks at the barangay, municipal/city and provincial levels.

The process starts with the barangay gathering information on the CBMS indicators and other information that the community deems necessary for its planning requirements.

With devolution and greater local autonomy, the need for a database for barangays have increased for they are now tasked with the preparation of annual barangay development plans.

The CBMS indicators will be useful to the barangays themselves when they make profiles of their communities and these will help them identify their problems and prioritize their projects to address these problems since financial resources are limited.

As a pilot municipality for this project in the province, Kiangan has already finished its first phase of gathering the data from the different barangays and at present collating and evaluating them for use during the succeeding years. (PIA Ifugao)

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