Sunday, June 20, 2010

A Network of Information for a Collective Action

It was May 1, 1985 when the first issue of Health Alert newsletter was published. This is where it all started. HAIN then became the repository of health information not just among people’s organizations but also for people in the academe, government, and media. At that time, everything was printed and publications played major role in advocacy; there was still no Internet and access to information was limited.

HAIN’s publications include newsletters, books, and monographs. Some of our publications present results of our research findings and provide documentations of the trainings we have conducted. The publications cover topics relevant to various health aspects from a wide range of social science disciplines and cater to different sectors. These publications reach both local and international communities.

The organization has gained credibility by adhering to its mission of providing accurate and unbiased scientific information. HAIN’s publications are generally reader-friendly; by tapping non-health professionals to write articles, issues are explained in layman’s language. Another advantage of tapping non-health professionals is that they provide a different perspective. Dr. Michael Tan noted that, “may nakikita na issue na nakapaloob sa health na hindi nakikita ng doctors at ibang health professionals.”

Training manuals are also published, including the Resource Center Manual. The manual provides NGOs with tips and know-how on running a resource center. HAIN was also tapped to spearhead the publication of the 2007 UNGASS Philippine Country Report. A four-page popular version was also published to make the report more accessible to the public.

HAIN’s expertise in strategic communication is not limited to publications. With funding support from different funding agencies, HAIN developed several projects to help other advocates from different organization enhance their communication skills. Two of these trainings were the Communicating for Advocacy Project and the Smart Chart Strategic Communications Workshops.

Source: Health Alert Special Issue, May 2010.

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