ComDev Asia partners convened via skype on April 17 to organize the steering committee and validate the Participatory Communication Plan (PCP), which will guide all activities of the ComDev Asia Initiative.
Members of the steering committee who attended the meeting include the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (UN FAO), UPLB-College of Development Communication (UPLB-CDC), Asian Farmers’ Association (AFA), World Association of Community Broadcasters (AMARC), and Digital Green.
In charge of promoting strategic projects of ComDev Asia, the steering committee will meet regularly to coordinate and provide progress reports on all activities of the initiative.
The steering committee also discussed and validated the 2020 ComDev Asia PCP which serves as the framework for planning, implementing, and integrating all activities of the project at regional and local levels. The PCP, which was adopted from the communication framework for family farming and the United Nations Decade of Family Farming (UNDFF), aims to promote family famers’ participation in sharing knowledge and skills, engagement in policy dialogues, and enhancement of communication capacities. It will involve farmer’s organizations, UN FAO decentralized offices in the region, networks of community media and specialized entities, the academe, and other allies.
The 2020 ComDev Asia PCP emphasizes three main lines of action:
- Participatory Communication, which includes three main subsets: knowledge-sharing of experiences and resources in communication for development and family farming; voices to farmers’ organizations; and joint communication campaigns on the UNDFF, family farming, and other pressing challenges ( e.g. COVID-19).
- Rural Communication Services, which aims to promote the institutionalization of communication services as part of family farming policies and programs, and advance the use of ICTS in rural areas through providing technical assistance.
- Communication Capacity Development, which enables enhancement of producer organizations and family farmers based on their experiences, needs, and communication priorities.
To coordinate activities and ensure progress in the PCP, steering committee members also determined a working group for each line of work. Focal persons from each steering committee member were identified along with the working group they want to get involved in based on their institutions’ contributions to the project and existing priorities.
Present in the meeting were Mario Acunzo, Elena Cerrai, and Siska Widyawati from UN FAO; Ma. Stella Tirol, Edmund Centeno, John Mervin Embate, and Joseph Lydio Roble from UPLB-CDC; Esther Penunia and Lorenzo Espacio and from AFA; Suman Basnet from AMARC; and Avinash Upadhyay from Digital Green.