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COMMUNITY ORGANIZING

Definition: A process by which the people, health services and agencies in the
community are brought together by:
a. Learn about the common problems
b. Identify these problems as their own.
c. Plan the kind of action needed to solve these problems
d. Act on this basis.

PHASES OF COMMINITY ORGANIZING

A. Preparatory Phase

1. Area or Site of Selection
 Relatively economically depressed
 Strategic
a. With significant problem-health or other related community problem
b. In terms of spread effect-position/location
 Population of 100-200 families for 2 staff
 Relatively free of similar agencies or programs (to avoid
competition or duplication or services)
 Clustered settlement patterns
 Other considerations
a. Language – understandable by staff
b. Distance transport – should be accessible
c. Community facilities

2. Community Study or Social Investigation

 It is a systematic and scientific process of collecting,
synthesizing and analyzing data in order to draw a clear picture of the community.
It is both a phase of a long process in itself. As a phase of CO, it comes in the
beginning and as a process it is continuing. (E.g. No community study is
complete. This means that we do not wait for every available information to
come in before proceeding with our organizing work. We take into consideration
the limits of our study and at the time to make allowances for the yet unknown.
 “It is as much as a matter of skills as of a standpoint. Our skill
and objectivity cannot be taken apart from partisanship towards the oppressed. It
is conducted to bring into focus the features of a general or particular explorative
and oppressive situation and to define the starting point of our organizing
activity.”
Objectives:
a. Provide basis for planning and programming or organizing activities
b. Determine the correct approach and method of organizing
c. Gather data on the geographic, economic, political and social situation of the
community in order to identify and understand the problems and issues that are
not in the community
d. Identify the classes and sectors present in the community in order to determine
their interests and attitudes towards the problems and issues in the community.

Data to Gather:
a. Demographic Profile
 Population, age groups, no. of women, etc.
b. Geographic Profile
 Terrain, natural resources, weather, climate, etc.
c. Ethnographic Profile
 Way of life
 Economic system or type of economic production. (Who owns and control the
means of production? What is the size or number of property of the different
classes and sectors? What is their position in production?)
 Political system or decision making structure. (What are the decision-making
structures in the community? Who controls them? What the responses and
attitudes are of peoples to these structures and ton their decisions? What is the
attitude of the people to change?)
 Social system. (What are the agencies, organizations that are existing in the
community? Describe the structure and membership. What are the projects
and programs? Which of these are active and popular among the people?)
 Cultural system, beliefs, and values. (What cultural media and institutions
exist in the community? Who owns and controls them? What values and
beliefs do they propagate?)

3. Entry to the Community
Types:
a. Bonga or Funfare – expect the community to receive him/her; with bits of
“funtivities”.
b. Padrino or Formal - introduce to the community by the official
c. Padama or Baiting – best type; silent way; low profile
d. People-oriented – low profile, but introduce yourself first to the officials
of the community.
Guidelines:
a. Recognizes the role and position of local authorities by paying them a visit
and informing them of your presence and objectives in the community
(Courtesy Call).
b. Present yourself according to the lifestyle in keeping with that of the
community. E.g. personal appearance, speech behavior, way of dressing.
c. Choose modest dwelling which is open to the majority of the people in the
community. If ever there is a need to stay with the family in the community,
the family should be suspected in the community.
d. Avoid raising expectations by adopting low approach and profile.

Activities Involved During the Early Phase
a. Associate with the people
b. Conduct information campaign about HRDP (Human Resource Development
Program).
c. Conduct community survey study and deepening social investigation
d. Provision of health services which are immediately needed by the people and the
community.

4. Integration

 It is the process of establishing rapport with the people and mutual trust with the
people in an effort to imbibe community life by living with them and undergoing
the same experiences. Sharing their hopes, aspirations and hardships towards
building mutual trust and cooperation.

Types:
a. “Pasawsaw-sawsaw, Padalaw-dalaw” - spend a little time with the community
b. Boarder or Staff house - rent a house within the community.
c. People-oriented - modified time, 12-16 hour; spend much time in the community.

Guidelines:
a. Participate directly in production process
b. Conduct house-to-house calls
c. Seek out and converse with the people where they usually congregate
d. Participate in social activities (this should not occupy most of your time)
e. Avoid gambling and drinking

B. Organizational Phase

1. Social Analysis / Preparation
 Activity that raise the level of consciousness of the people and the
organizer. It involves the peoples lives, their experiences and aspirations.
 The organizer is able to grasp the people’s problems that was abstract
before and has become a reality after the organizer participated in the
community’s way of life.
Guidelines:
a. Deepen social investigation and integration with the people by continuing to
dialogue with the people in order to know their way of life.
b. Work hand in hand with the people in relating with their problems.
c. Help the people go through the analysis of the situation more systematically.
d. Float the idea of health programs informally through chats and mini sessions.
e. Plot out seasonal problems in the community
f. Make a spot map during this time.

2. Spotting and Development of Potential Indigenous Community Health Worker
(CHW) Leader
 In the process of integration and community study, conscious effort must be made
to identify potential community health workers and leaders.

Guidelines/Criteria in Selecting Community (Health) Leaders:
a. One must represent a sector in the community (belongs to poor sectors and classes)
b. Actively involve in the production
c. Must have trust in the people’s capability
d. Well respected by the community residents and could influence the community
people.
e. Believes in changes and is willing to work for them.
f. Committed, conscientious and resourceful.
g. Can communicate effectively with the people.
h. Willing to develop and train other people for leadership

Guidelines in Selecting Community Health Workers
a. Facilitate the integration of the community organizer (CO) and other NGO staff
into the community by introducing then to the residents.
b. Assist the CO organizer in spot mapping and clustering or sectoring of
households.
c. Assist the NGO staff in conducting baseline community leader.
d. Assist the CO in identifying other potential leader.
e. Assist the NGO staff in conducting information campaign.

3. Core Group Formation / Small Group Building
 Calls for the formation of the potential leaders into a group who would be able to
work hand in hand with the organizer. This also calls for the implementation by
the community organizer of four distinct but related activities for core group
formation:
o Close integration with core group members
o Continuous deepening of social investigation about community and
individual core group members
o Thorough training and education of core group members on local and
national health situation, primary health care, community diagnosis,
participatory leadership, group building and social mobilization.
o Mobilization of the core group (actual planning, implementing and
monitoring small group scale projects / activities).

Minimum Tasks of Core Group Members:
a. Assist the organizer in:
 Gathering data for deeper community studies
 Spotting other potential leaders and prospective members of the
community organization.
 Conducting home visits and “purok” meetings.
b. Take the lead role in the formation of small groups / discussion groups
c. Take the lead role in the selection of Volunteer Health Worker (VHW) trainee.
d. Help in drawing up plans and tasks for the formation and sustenance of the
community organization.
4. Recruitment of Members
 It is the core group members that implement this phase.
 Since the group represents all the sectors of the community, the members that
they should recruit must come from the sector that they represent.
 From the core group members, the organizing then processes geometrically.
 Each one will invite their own members until the whole community is converted.
 With this, community organizing becomes people centered rather than leader-
centered organization
C. Setting-up An Organization / Organization Building Phase

 People are now ready to organize
 People are convinced by the need to organize.
 It is during the general assembly that they will declare their unit and select
their leaders.
 Entails formation of more formal structures and inclusion of more formal
procedures of planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluating community
wide activities.

Four Major Activities During Organization Building

1. Pre-organization building phase.
 Preparation of the community for the setting up of their organization for
health.
 Through house-to-house visits and purok-meetings/assemblies.
2. Organizing and setting the barrio health committee.
 Organizing the Primary Health Care Council (PHCC) or any equivalent
structure.
a. Election of officers based on a set criteria.
b. Formation of health committees and defining their functions.
c. Preparation of legal documents such as the organizations constitution and by-
laws.
3. Training and education of the organization.
 Training of all officers and members of the community health
organization of PHCC
4. Mobilization of health organization.
 Mobilization of the PHCC in planning, implementation and evaluation of
community activities, in response to health needs.

D. Consolidation and Expansion Phase

1. Strengthening the Organization
 Community organization should not end with the formal establishment of the
organization.
 Organization needs to be strengthened continuously.
 Consolidation – strengthening leadership, group and uniting membership in terms
of orientation, direction and objectives of the health program.
 It will help reinforce the people’s confidence in their power and would have every
opportunity to prove themselves.

Ways to Strengthen the Organization:
Education and Training
1. Regular Business and Study meetings
a. to inculcate positive attitudes, values to CHWs and the group
b. clarify expectations
c. identify strengths an weaknesses of fellow leaders and workers
d. appreciate “fraternal corrections”
e. improve work and relations
f. deepen grasp of work and orientation
2. Conduct Community Diagnosis – to come up with local health situation that
will be the basis of work of the health program thru survey & questionnaires.
3. Actual Training
a. The group bases curriculum design on identified health problems it could be
according to level, content and participants.
b. Topic taught are applied or put into practice through health services.
c. Services are based on the skill and capacity of the CHWs and staff,
the demand and availability of materials and equipment.

2. Working With Other Organizations For Development
GOAL – town-wide to province-wide to region-wide to nation-wide.
Activities involved:
1. Networking and Linkaging – establishing links with other sectors.
2. Assistance and support to organizing efforts of other sectors.
3. Development of secondary leaders/CHWs

3. Phase Out / Evaluation
1. Referral to coordinating body. The CBHP is endorsed at different levels for
assistance and support.
2. Periodic follow-up. Staff development sessions, consultations, conferences,
program visit and evaluation.