Inter-NGO coordination was institutionalized through the NGO federation, AFON. A number of joint NGO activities were conducted to enhance collaboration and these included strategy sessions, tactic sessions, learning visits, local trainings, development and refinement of a common C.O. framework and set of performance standards, consultations, and symposia. Ad hoc committees were organized from time to time to handle specific issues. Among these were the C.O. committee, the inter-NGO LTI committee, the committee on rice stockpiling, the CBEF committee, and the committee on local governance.
A formal forum of inter-GO coordination in the context of ANIAD program implementation did not take off despite earlier efforts by PPDO. The provincial development council became a substitute forum but because of its diverse membership it did not really serve the purpose. Besides, PPDO's role in that body was more of a secretariat in charge of documentation and collation of reports. Thus no timely operational coordination like in the case of the NGOs was achieved.
The ANIAD monthly technical committee meetings served as the main forum for GO-NGO coordination where managers and supervisors could discuss operational issues, sort out coordination problems, and synchronize plans and activities. For whatever it was worth, only once was it postponed during the entire Phase 2 period of 4 years.
The ANIAD board of trustees serve also a forum for GO-NGO coordination, one particularly valued by the NGOs and POs who see its distinct advantages over other bodies (like, for example, the provincial development council). In the ANIAD board GOs, NGOs, and POs are on equal footing, there is focus on concrete rural development issues facing the parties, and sectoral interests are balanced and taken into account.
Other coordinative mechanisms existed at other levels. The cluster meeting of field workers operating in contiguous areas was adopted by 2 municipalities and has now become a regular feature tackling concerns beyond ANIAD. The LIPASECU bay management council drew its inspiration from the ANIAD Foundation and is now a GO-NGO-PO forum in itself. The inter-NGO LTI (land tenure improvement) committee expanded to consider GO and PO participation, leading to the institutionalization of ProCARRD (provincial consultation on agrarian reform and rural development).
Early efforts at NGO institutional development followed a standard and common approach aimed more at developing "generalists". It was only later in Phase 2 that specialization gained headway. Despite the lateness of the shift, a number of competencies were built up in different NGOs: agrarian reform, IPM, and SWC for AHDP; enterprise promotion, coastal resource management, and women and children for ADF; coastal resource management, upland development, and (to a lesser degree) local governance for PROCESS; Masipag rice promotion for HICHE; and cooperative-formation and credit for AFCCUI.
On the side of government (particularly, the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist and the various municipal agricultural offices), the thrust was different. From a narrow specialization, technicians were trained in other fields to better respond to the growing demand of farmers. Thus rice specialists were also trained on soil and water conservation; SWC specialists were trained on high-value crops (like coffee) and livestock; etc.
Many competence-building activities were conducted by OPA and these include: technical consultations and planning sessions, study sessions, trainings using non-formal-education techniques, exposure trips, team-building, assessments and evaluations, and preparation of manuals.
Planning, implementation, and monitoring in local government units
65 POs were accredited as members of BDCs (barangay development councils). 41 were accredited by MDCs (municipal development councils).
It was through the participation of these POs that PO project ideas were included in the barangay development plan and issues common to several barangays were addressed in the municipal development plan.
As already indicated earlier, CBNEF counterpart requirement also stimulated claim-making by POs and their proposed projects were provided allocation at both barangay and municipal levels.
Agricultural knowledge and information system
A rapid appraisal of agricultural knowledge and information systems was conducted in 1995 which resulted to the formation of an inter-agency group to produce information materials, rationalization of the deployment of technicians, and improved technical and administrative supervision over agricultural extension workers through the municipal agricultural offices.
The operationalization of the government's social reform agenda followed some of the approaches which resulted from the rapid appraisal like the mobilization of community volunteers, identification and monitoring of minimum basic needs, identification of income-generating activities, and organization of municipal and provincial technical working groups.
Two rapid appraisals were later conducted focusing specifically on coconut and banana.
Program planning and monitoring
A set timetable for annual planning was followed by the program, involving a number of consultations with POs and partner GOs (including municipal-based personnel) and NGOs. Over the years there was a marked improvement in the quality of participation by various sectors in the planning process. The plans also became more target-specific and result-oriented.
Correspondingly, monitoring in Phase 2 focused more on results rather than on inputs.
Decentralization of decision-making
Decentralization in operational decision-making was effectively achieved through technical working groups which are either area-based (e.g., Valderrama TWG), project-specific (e.g., FRWO TWG), or program-wide (e.g. CRM TWG and Upland TWG).
Improved collegial responsibility was also achieved in the technical committee meetings, training coordinating committee, and CBNEF project evaluation committee with partner NGOs and GOs taking a much more active role than in Phase 1.
Consultative bodies on credit and financial management were also regularized as a means for further decentralization.
Strengthening of ANIAD Foundation
In 1995 the Foundation conducted a strategic visioning workshop to look into future possibilities and priorities. This was followed up in 1997 by a similar but more focused session (more oriented towards preparing a Phase 3 plan).
Other measures to increase the role and participation of the Foundation in the management of the ANIAD program were instituted. A smaller Board which could meet more often was created. POs were brought in as members of the Foundation and of the Board. The Foundation Treasurer was given a more active role in the management of ANIAD funds and the Board was re-oriented on ANIAD funds flow and financial systems.