Meeting TENTS has a formal collaboration with a local nonprofit and clinic in Davao, Philippines. Together we conducted a thorough community needs assessment and are implementing an HIV education and testing program.
In 2018, we began training staff from the local clinic and key community leaders on HIV/AIDS, disease transmission, diagnosis, and how to educate the community on prevention and treatment.
As an interdisciplinary team with the local nonprofit, we extended our collaboration to promote longterm sustainability. This HIV initiative has been an example of unity as a number of entities are working together to improve testing and access to care for Filipinos. Meeting TENTS, Heart for the World, FCCDI, Vineyard Davao, the Philippines Department of Health, City of Davao, and Assumption College of Davao are all working together to serve the people of Davao.
Given the background of our co-founder, Dr. Danielle Walker, and her experience working with the CDC managing HIV care (ADAP) for the State of Maine, we believe that a new story is being written when it comes to HIV/AIDS in the Philippines. A story filled with hope!
Public Health Education
After completing a formal community assessment in Davao, one of the priorities determined within our collaboration was to increase Public Health education within the community. The local clinic already conducts health education seminars with patients and community members, so this process was to come behind what they are already doing and support them more.
Our team was able to meet with CDC and the City of El Paso Department of Public Health to gather training resources for Davao, Philippines. Dr. Walker was able to train the clinic staff and key community leaders on several requested topics including parasites, wound care, skin diseases, hygiene, Public Health 101, stress management, HIV/AIDS, and more.
The team in the Philippines learned the presentations, edited for cultural competence, and practiced teaching after they had learned. All training materials, PowerPoints, a computer, and projector were left with the local clinic staff so education could continue without our team.
We believe in investing in our partners so they are encouraged, empowered, and thrive. This takes different shapes and forms, but always requires intentionality to take time to really get to know our friends in other nations.
On our last trip to the Philippines, we dedicated a night to the clinic staff. We spent time eating a meal together, hearing their hearts, encouraging them, and praying for them. They have become like family to us.
Follow along on our social media (@meetingtents) to keep up to date with our trips.