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139A member of the Making All Voices Count (MAVC) Communications team in Netherlands, Ms. Anastasia Gavrili, visited the Philippines from July 4-8, 2016 with the objective of meeting previous and current MAVC grantees in an effort to gather stories, photos and/or videos that may be used to highlight the projects in the Philippines. The Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP) has just recently concluded its MAVC project entitled ““Developing technology-based innovation platforms at provincial level: Supporting Bottom Up Budgeting (BuB) projects for 2015 in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao to identify context specific tech-based innovations to support with making the BuB reporting and monitoring more feasible and information accessible to civil society organizations, provincial government and communities at large” in April 2016.
Ms. Gavrili interviewed ULAP Executive Director Czarina Medina-Guce, Programs, Plans and Policy (PPP) Director Genixon David and PPP Manager Crystal Eunice Dela Cruz at Café Breton, UP Technohub, Quezon City on July 5, 2016. Moreover, Ms. Dela Cruz facilitated and accompanied Ms. Gavrili and MAVC Philippines Country Engagement Developer Vivien Suerte-Cortez in a learning visit and focus group discussion with key project stakeholders in Surigao del Norte in the afternoon of July 8, 2016.
The Surigao del Norte project stakeholders were participated by representatives from the provincial government planning and development office, and the municipalities of Malimono and San Isidro, Siargao. They shared stories of how the project inspired Governor Sol Matugas to release an Executive Order creating the Provincial BuB Implementing Unit, which focuses on gathering, troubleshooting and reporting issues on the ground. More so, they shared that the capacity building component of the project has helped them better communicate, negotiate and utilize data in their work. Lastly, despite the break caused by the last elections, the province has reported that the provincial BuB hotline, with telephone and mobile as modes of communication, has been successfully set-up and functional. They expressed that they have yet to expand and improve with regards to the hotline and the unit, but are proud that they have taken the first steps through the project.