TACLOBAN CITY—As part of the initiatives to mobilize men as partners in women empowerment and gender equality, the Commission on Population (Popcom) in

Eastern Visayas has conducted a two-day training on “Mainstreaming MR GAD KATROPA in Gender and Development, and Maternal New Born and Child Health and Nutrition” on April 28-29, 2014 at Ritz Tower de Leyte.
Popcom Regional Director Elnora Pulma said the training focused on involving men in advocating and championing Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health and Nutrition (MNCHN) program thus contributing to the goal of reducing maternal deaths, and in promoting responsible parenting.
Pulma added that men, as partners of women, can do so much to nurture the health of the mothers and prevent unwanted deaths caused by pregnancy and childbirth.
She said men are powerful and potent partner in protecting and caring for women to ensure safe pregnancy and childbirth.
To highlight the role of men in promoting maternal and child health and responsible parenting, Popcom has been capacitating males (men and boys) as advocates for this concern through KAlalakihang Tumutugon sa Responsibilidad at Obligasyon PAra (KATROPA) sa Kalusugan ng Ina at Pamilya (Males Responsive to their Responsibilities and Obligations to a Healthy Mother and Family).
The term “katropa” connotes a group of male peers who have developed a sense of camaraderie. Taking off from this idea, it is believed that mobilizing men collectively for maternal health and responsible parenthood can make pregnancy and child birth a joyous moment for women as well as their male partners, instead of situations where women have to risk their lives from the risk of pregnancy and child birth.
During the training, participants were introduced to basic gender concepts and issues, including masculinity and patriarchy; understanding one’s sexuality; improving relationships with partner; role in MNCHN; protection from gender-based violence; and protection from sexually transmitted diseases.
After understanding and appreciating the roles of men in various aspects of caring for women’s, their and their family’s well-being, the participants made an action plan in promoting MNCHN and responsible parenting.
The inputs would also serve as guide for the participants in their various actions that could be undertaken to promote MNCHN and responsible parenting after the training. (Reyan L. Arinto, IO-I POPCOM-8/PR)