A total of 28 participants had been trained on Effective Written and Visual Documentation last November 24-26, 2010 at Malagos Garden Resort, Calinan, Davao City, as part of MFI’s Staff Training and Development. Besides its staff, guest-participants from partner-organizations Allah Valley Development Foundation, Inc. (AVDFI) and Tribal Leaders Development Foundation, Inc. (TLDFI) took part in the activity as well.  The training was conducted by the well-versed, articulate, and owner-editor of the magazine Gensan Gazer, Mr. Armando Nicolas PJ. Objectives of the training were to provide additional information, correct wrong practices, and enhance skills on written and visual documentation.

Morning activities of the first day include getting to know each other, expectation setting, presentation of training design, organizing of host teams, and setting of house rules.  A buzz activity followed, which aimed to answer questions such as ‘What do we document?’ and ‘Why do we document?.’  A power point-based discussion ?ensued regarding the definitions of documentation and data collection, methods of data collection, and basics of news writing (ABCs of news writing, 5 Ws, news values, and elements of a news story).  The participants spent the afternoon at their assigned locations (Malagos Garden Nursery, Calinan Public Market, Navaral’s Dairy Farm, and Malagos Elementary School), taking photos of possible subjects, to be used in the individual entries for the Practicum on Written and Photo Documentation.

Next day activities include a review of topics learned the previous day using the ‘cabbage ball exercise.’  A ball of bundled paper with written questions on each paper, was passed around by participants, peeling each paper as the music stopped.  The question was read and answered, and the ball was passed around repeating the cycle.  Critiquing of photos ensued, wherein Mr. Armando PJ first presented the winning photos, explained tips on how to improve it, and demonstrated what he would have done if he were to present it.  Assessment of the top 3 write ups followed, all of which were news features.

Winners of the said activity for photos were: 3rd place, Mr. Allen S. Terencio; 2nd place, Ms. Kristin M. Gonzales; and 1st place, Ms. Rosalie B. Demetillo.  For documentation, winners were: 3rd place, Mr. Rex Charlie C. Teves; 2nd place, a tie between Ms. Gemma B. Estrebilla and Ms.Carmen D. Festijo; and 1st place, Mr. Abdullah P. Mucalna of AVDFI.

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