The DENR CALABARZON sets its 8-Year Strategic Communication Action Plans for its Quezon Protected Areas during the Communications Planning Workshop for the Protected Areas of Quezon Province held last March 28-30, 2022 at St. Jude Coop Hotel and Events Center, Tayabas, City, Quezon.

DENR CALABARZON is one of the first regions to develop Communications Plans specific for Protected Areas. “Ang gusto natin ay magkaroon tayo ng nakalatag na plano… We will try to arrive at communications activities designed specifically for your own PAs. Tayo ang isa sa mauuna na gumawa ng Comm Plan at very challenging sa atin. This may set the bar for other Regions in making Comm Plan specific to PAs”, said For. Raymond Rivera, Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer of Quezon Province.

The CALABARZON Region eyes to develop 18 Communications Plans for its 12 Protected Areas in Quezon, 1 PA in Batangas, 1 PA in Cavite, and 4 PAs in Rizal for the year 2022. This is to set the 2022-2030 communication objectives of DENR CALABARZON for the 18 Protected Areas of the Region and capacitate representatives from each PA to produce and build a clear and comprehensive communication plan for its targeted stakeholders.

PENRO Rivera reminded the participants of the importance of progress and technical monitoring. He raised that the communications plan could be subject for change. “Ang plano hindi naman ‘yan nakataga sa bato. As we implement evolving ‘yan kasi after we conduct an activity we assess saan tayo nagkulang o nagkamali at ano pa ang pwede nating iimprove para sa susunod ay mas effective ang ating communications activities.”

Meanwhile, Ms. Rowena Ganibi, Assistant Division Chief of the DENR Strategic Communication and Initiatives Service Development Communication Division (SCIS-DCD), emphasized that the communications interventions of DENR should move forward from raising awareness to eliciting behavioral change among its intended audience and stakeholders. This was supported by PENRO Rivera saying “On top of our target, ang basic premise ay kailangan nating mabago ang pag-iisip at behavior ng mga taong kasama natin sa PA at makita nila ang importansya ng PA. Dapat ay may sense of ownership ang mga tao sa ating PAs.”

After the Communications Planning Workshop, the PA staff will move on with further data gathering on their respective areas through the conduct of KAP (Knowledge, Attitude, Practices) Survey, Focus Group Discussions, and Key Informant Interviews.

Meanwhile, the Communications Planning Workshop was attended by the Protected Area Superintendents (PASUs), Assistant PASUs, PA Technical Staff, and Provincial and Community Information Officers of Quezon Province. It was facilitated by PENRO Quezon in coordination with the DENR CALABARZON Conservation and Development Division (CDD) and the Regional Strategic Communication and Initiatives Group (RSCIG). Assistance from partner academes such as the Batangas State University, Enverga, Southern Luzon State University, and St. Anne College were also sought for technical guidance in the writing of the communications plans.

Topics discussed during the three-day workshop include: BMB Technical Bulletins Pertinent in the development of PA Communications Plans tackled by For. Salud Pangan of the DENR4A CDD and the Results-based 8-Year Strategic Communication Action Plan presented by Ms. Rowena Ganibi of SCIS-DCD. Further, Dr. Vaberlie Manadane-Garcia and Dr. Benedict O. Medina of the Batangas State University facilitated the workshops on PESTLE Analysis and SWOT Analysis, Discussion on handling FGD and KII and analyzing Qualitative and Quantitative Data, Discussion and Workshop on Stakeholder Mapping, Discussion on identifying the communication problem and writing short-term, medium-term and long-term communications objective. On the last day of the workshop, the participants were tasked to develop their respective KAP Surveys as preparation for gathering their baseline data.

On the other hand, the workshop will also be implemented for the PAs of Rizal, Batangas and Cavite. The Quezon cluster PAs aim to finish their Communications Plans by May while the rest of the provinces are set to finalize their Communications Plans by June. ###