aizeel-dopplerRoots of Health works with some of the most underserved communities in Puerto Princesa. We conduct a thorough Needs Assessment process so that we can be sure that we are delivering services to women and girls most in need of them. Indeed our communities have some of the highest unmet contraceptive need rates, highest number of children/family members, highest number of teenaged pregnancy, highest levels of malnutrition, highest levels of general health problems and lowest levels of education and income in Puerto Princesa. These women and girls live in very marginalized circumstances, often with no electricity or source of clean water. They do not have access to any paid health services, and government services are difficult to access. The government-paid midwife may, for instance, be in the health center for only one afternoon every two weeks. Most of the women are unemployed, with their partners or husbands working as casual laborers. They generally have three or four children, often experiencing their first pregnancy at the age of 16 or even younger. Some have finished elementary school, but very few have finished high school.

The root causes of these problems stem from the lack of access to information and education about health, as well as a lack of access to the tools needed to improve health. Roots of Health’s activities help combat these root causes by providing information and education to women and in the community by making tools such as contraceptives and access to reproductive health care, prenatal exams, and skilled assistance at birth a reality for people who would otherwise not have it.

We present informal workshop sessions through an interactive curriculum that uses a human rights framework and engages the women in learning about their bodies, their reproductive systems, pregnancy, family planning, STIs, breastfeeding, nutrition, family relations, financial literacy, budgeting, and other related topics. After attending the sessions, women are able to make better choices for their families and themselves. In addition to education, we also provide access. We provide women access to health services, allowing them to control whether or when they become pregnant. When our clients are pregnant, planned or not, we provide services and vitamins to ensure the continued health of the woman and her baby. Our midwife and nurses are on call for home deliveries to ensure that a skilled birth attendant is available for any woman who wants or needs one.

We currently work in the following communities.

Bacungan Candes Dos
Bacungan Talaudyong
San Jose Matiyaga
Santa Lourdes Looban (Busngol)
Santa Lourdes Magsasaka
Santa Lourdes Pulang Lupa
Santa Lourdes Unang Lahi
Sicsican Pastoda
Tagburos Silangan (Aplaya)