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      History

 COMMISSION ON POPULATION REGIONAL OFFICE VIII
Government Center, Palo Leyte

    

HISTORICAL REVIEW


 

The evolution of the population program in Region VIII paralleled with the evolution process of the program at the national level. The program today has emerged from a concept of a fertility-reduction to the one that recognize the intricate interrelationship between population, resources and environment, in the region's effort to achieve the objective of sustainable development.

In the 70s, the population program was demographic-focused. This was the decade whereby all regional initiatives were geared towards limiting the number of children of each family thru education and the use of contraceptives. A true people-based population program was realized thru recruitment, training and development of outreach workers. Clinic-based and itinerant teams were created and Barangay Service Points (BSPs) were organized and recognized nationwide.

The limited impact of the dichotomous approach adopted in the program implementation to the over-all development program of the region, was responded to by the introduction of the Total Integrated Development Approach (TIDA) in 1976, where Family Planning was integrated with broad range of development activities at the community level. This new program thrust included the involvement of local government units in the total implementation of the program strengthened by a community-based service delivery at the barangays level. This conceptual shift of the program gained full support from the local government units, as manifested by the 100% turn-over of LGUs Internal Revenue Allocation actually expended in support to the program.

A demographic program was continuously pursued by the region until the early part of the 80s. Training activities were intensified geared towards instituting formal structure and working out consensual agreement for smooth program implementation.

The High Scenario Scheme, which was conceptualized to increase the Family Planning performance at the regional level, was successfully implemented.

The religious sector was likewise enlisted for advocacy of the Christian concept of the program specifically on the value of responsible parenthood and the Natural Family Planning.

In 1987, the program evolved into a holistic approach to address issue concerning population welfare. It likewise increased the participation of the NGOs and private sector. This however, found difficulty in operationalizing given the fact that the public mindset continued to equate the program to contraception.

In the decade of the 90s, emerging concerns such as environment and resources shifted the regional population program thrusts as it keep pace with the progressive changes in the program at the national level. This new perspective allowed greater innovativeness within local government operations in the decentralized implementation of the program,

Today, the local government units assumed greater responsibility of the program including fund generation with the technical assistance from the Regional Population Office, acting as the technical arm of the National Population Office at the regional level.