“Let’s go!”

I was relieved and happy the survey design was completed and now excited to get going!

I arrived at the LVPO office at 7am to do some last minute prep. I’d be accompanying the team in the field who were conducting a series of Kabalikat Orientation and Usapang Buntis (Safe Motherhood) sessions. Once all the gear was packed up and ready, we responded to Jack’s familiar command “let’s go!” and set off to our first stop, Barangay 176 Health Center. This was the first one I visited in Milk Letting(link) and was impressed seeing midwife Sophie Angeles in action.


Explaining the birth plan
Practicing deep breathing exercises

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In the meantime, data collection begins with Kit, Jeff and Jack (aka The Dream Team) with pregnant women and husbands:


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Wrapping up the session with a final few words from Jeff
Baby starter kits are given to the attendees
Who were delighted!

From here we headed to Barangay 161 for the male version of this session, joined by a number of Kabalikat. Interest and participation was excellent and very good humoured. It gave men the chance to ask questions and clarify myths such as why they don’t put cloth around the umbilical cord when it’s cut ,as they are previously used to doing.

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Barangay police and dangerous assassins working side by side 🙂


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After the session, more data collection from a husband of a pregnant women and Kabalikat volunteers…

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The next day we arrived at Barangay 14 Health Center to interview more pregnant women, health workers and BHW’s.

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Everyone is playing close attention…
Jack interviewing adolescent mum to be


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It’s thirsty work!


Time to brave the traffic to Barangay 187 before the heavens open…ah, not quite!

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This time we were able to capture feedback from post natal women (within 3 months of giving birth) as well as the midwife and BHW’s

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Urban data collection was now complete! Time to go rural.

I was hoping to go to Mindanao once more and was looking forward to being with the team again but security travel restrictions meant I had to abort this visit. The run up to the elections had increased the risk significantly since my last trip, so while disappointing, it was completely understandable. Desiree and Mae were able to collect data in the GSK project site of Lambayong in Sultan Kuradat and did a spectacular job on my behalf. This means we will have a complete data set to present next year and I am truly grateful to them for their efforts 🙂

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Now all the data is in, I can begin analysis and prepare the results. I hope to present my findings to the Dept. Of Health and City Health Department in Caloocan City next year as well as PDQ (Program Development and Quality) here at Save.

It’s hard to believe I’m nearly at the end of my assignment; the last few months have sped by. I have seen and learnt so much more than I can tell you through these blogs, but I hope they provide an essence of the amazing work that goes on to continually improve lives here. I have been honoured to be part of it.

Wishing you all a very happy and restful Christmas and New Year….Speak soon, Alli 🙂






  1. Hi Ally, great (team) work! I hope you can bring back all your experiences and energy to us after this wonderful experience so we can learn from you. Have a wonderful Christmas holiday!

  2. Another lovely blog and so much evidence of amazing work! Looking forward to hearing some of the outputs of the survey 🙂 Have a wonderful Christmas! xxx

  3. Well done Alli, it must be great to reach this stage of your work and feel the excitement of analysing the data now. In the meantime, have a lovely Christmas break and a Happy New Year to you!

  4. It’s been great following along your journey. I hear you caught up with Claire recently, and I was glad that you both connected! See you back at GSK soon.

  5. Great to read about all the work and research you are collating – hope you had a lovely Christmas and happy new year!

  6. Now in the New Year. So my very best wishes for 2016 for yourself, and also for us in the CUC where we’ll hopefully benefit from what you’ve learned 😉 I hope you had a great Christmas break! now the analysis work, make sure you’ve got enough time to complete it and I hope you can present it too (if presentation is after you’ve gone, you seem to have a good team, so you can apply your delegation skills!)
    Kind regards, Odilexx

    1. Thanks Odile and to you too 🙂 I had a lovely Christmas break in Hong Kong before the last leg of the journey, which is all done…see next blog, out soon via Perth!

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