Self-Help Approach: Children-Focused-Community Development


The FDAI project adopts the Self-Help Approach (SHA) promoted by Kindernothilfe (KNH) Germany; thereby participation of the community is assured from the very start. KNH is the project funder and is a leading organization in SHA Promotion.

SHA features the organizing of the least fortunate women in the community. These women are slowly facilitated into becoming subjects of their own development, until such time that they are awakened of their inherent cultural, political, and economic powers. When awakened, these women would start questioning the status quo and start demanding and acting upon themselves what are rightfully theirs. This awakening would lead the women to discover the community’s endowments and would lead to unmasking problem areas and to begin seeing solutions.

Goal and Objectives

The official title of the project is: Empowering Women for Children-Focused-Community Development Interventions in Selected Agusan Marsh Barangays.

The overall goal of the project is: Reduced number of at risk and vulnerable children in Selected Nine (9) Barangays in Agusan Marsh.

To achieve the overall goal of the project, the following items has to be acted upon:

  1. To increase the number of quality graduates in the area;
  2. To lower incidence of child malnutrition, to lower incidence of common illnesses and to provide access to potable water;
  3. To increase fish production and eventually fish catch by the locals;
  4. To generate livelihood and employment opportunities for men and women in the area; and
  5. To re-awaken traditional culture of Indigenous Peoples in the area

Program Components

Self-Help Approach Promotion

Self-Help Approach seeks to bring out the potential of the poorest and mainstream them with the rest of the community. It seeks to draw the poorest back from the margins and have them participate in local governance, in shaping the future of the locality. To do so, the project component works on forming and establishing 3 Levels of People’s Institutions: the Self-Help Groups, the Cluster Level Association, and the Federation.

Educational Development and Child Sponsorship

This component endeavours to address the low participation rate and very low percentage of high school and college graduates in the area. The same program is aimed at addressing the low quality of education in the area due to lack/absence of relevant equipment/facilities.

Significant component in this program is the selection of 400 children to become scholars and sponsored by German Nationals who commit to help address the poverty that characterizes the area.

Health and Sanitation Enhancement

This component addresses the perennial problem caused by lack/absence of reliable sources of potable water in the area. This component then sees the establishment/construction of potable water system. The same component sees the institutionalization of Container Gardening (as a way of addressing the lack/absence of nutritious foods in the area) and Integrative Health Management System (as a way of addressing the perennial problems caused by common illnesses).

Livelihood Enhancement and Enterprise Development

This component endeavours to address the lingering poverty in the area by way of up-scaling existing Resource-Based Enterprises and by introducing new ones. This way, individuals acquire incomes, which in turn propel enterprises in the area.

Cultural Re-Awakening

This component endeavours to address the observed ethnocide happening in the area by way of conducting Socio-Cultural Impact Assessment and Research and Documentation of Indigenous Knowledge Systems and Practices (IKSPs). Results of both endeavours shall be utilized in enriching other project components by way of integrating relevant and appropriate IKSPs. The same results shall be utilized as the source materials in the Issue-Based Theatre Presentations by project-trained Cultural Workers.

Fisheries Sustainability Interventions

This component sees the project addressing the problem of loss of fisheries productivity due to climate change and illegal harvesting activities. This component endeavours to institutionalize Fish Sanctuaries in selected lakes.