The Asian Development Bank (ADB), through its Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR) Grant, sponsored a five-day Geographic Information System (GIS) training for selected NEDA Regional Office (NRO) VIII staff, entitled, “Continuing On-the-Job Capacity Building through Learning-by-Doing on GIS/Mapping, Reporting on Results” on 27 February to 03 March 2017 at the Zamal Hall, NEDA Regional Office (NRO) VIII, Government Center, Palo, Leyte.

The training aimed to further strengthen the capacity of ten (10) NRO VIII technical staff in the use of GIS tools in project monitoring and evaluation of the Typhoon Yolanda Comprehensive Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan (CRRP) in Eastern Visayas.

In the opening program, Mr. Tatsuya Kanai, Senior Advisor of the ADB Office of Cofinancing Operations, informed the participants that the ADB-JFPR grant is one of the most successful projects that the ADB has implemented. OIC-ARD Meylene Rosales warmly welcomed Mr. Kanai and other ADB guests and participants, and expressed gratitude to ADB for sponsoring this training, which was identified as one of the training needs of NRO VIII.

Mr. Noriel Sicad, ADB M&E Consultant, and Mr. Eugene Napiza, ADB GIS Specialist, served as resource persons during the training. Mr. Napiza imparted to the participants about GIS and other support applications, including the geotagging of projects using android phone, introduction of Quantum GIS (QGIS) application and its basic operations, creating shape files using geotagged photos, joining tables to include the details of the projects, creating map layout and labels, and adding photos of the project to the map created. Meanwhile, Mr. Sicad explained the use of Unified Accounts Code Structure (UACS) in integrating some elements of the UACS into the GIS-enabled database, which provides a government-wide harmonized budgetary, treasury and accounting code classification framework to facilitate reporting of all financial transactions of agencies.

The participants were able to produce maps (using QGIS application) of projects visited such as the Construction of Pathwalk in Brgy. Magallanes, Basey, Samar, and the Ridge View Park Permanent Housing in Brgy. Cabalawan, Tacloban City), during the field work. The maps, which reflected the projects details and geotagged photos, were critiqued by the resource persons and two NRO VIII senior staff.

In his closing remarks, NEDA VIII Regional Director Bonifacio G. Uy thanked ADB for the exceptional support and assistance provided through the JFPR grant and assured them of the application of knowledge and skills gained by the participants in the M&E reporting of the office.

Lucille B. Gajutos, PMED, NEDA VIII