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Monday, February 6, 2023

Kapihan with PIA Caraga at full throttle


By Renelle L. Escuadro

Indeed, the finale episode of the Kapihan with PIA Caraga for the year 2022 entitled, “Let’s Talk about AIDS” ended on a high note. 

The Philippine Information Agency (PIA) Caraga made it sure that even on its last episode, it would continue to prioritize and highlight the agency’s institutional mandate by leading the information drive and dissemination of the World AIDS Day Celebration every December 1. 

As a mindful member of the Philippine National AIDS Council (PNAC), PIA Caraga hopes to contribute to end the social stigma on Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). This institutional mandate was successfully delivered with its Kapihan episode for World AIDS Day, where PIA Caraga invited the subject matter experts on HIV/AIDS from the Department of Health and Butuan Medical Center as the accredited testing center of the local government unit. 

As the speakers emphasized, HIV testing is a right that all Filipinos should be afforded.

The Kapihan with PIA is an institutional network and capability program of the Agency. All regional offices of PIA continue to include this best practice in their accomplishments and these offices have the volition to revamp and modify the program according to their eccentricities whilst keeping its core. 

For PIA Caraga, the monthly Kapihan is a talk show that serves as a venue where the Agency can spotlight its institutional mandates and priority areas for communication and allow government agencies and offices discuss their essential and current programs and activities to the general public and the media with the intention that all these will reach the grassroots. A question and answer segment is done after the discussion where local media outfits and the audience are given time to raise their questions to the guests. 

There is no better place to conduct a talk show than to have it in a location complete with amenities, well-ventilated, reliable security system, and powered by Dolby digital sound system. SM City Butuan is exactly the right venue for the Kapihan. 

Its public relations office remains accommodating even during requests for  special episodes where we conduct more than once in a month. 

To this day, the Kapihan with PIA has consistently showed strong media engagement. This has encouraged the strong support and of the Agency's partners in the dissemination of factual news.


Flexibility in the new normal 

When Covid-19 struck the country, PIA Caraga ensured that information will not be on lockdown as well. With high adversity quotient, the regional office committed to conduct the activity every month, embraced the new normal and consistently complied with the health protocols. 

Passionate to deliver accurate, timely and relevant information which was most needed during the pandemic, the caliber information officers  of PIA Caraga dolled up and geared with face shield and face masks to host the activity. Program hosts and guests dutiful to participate in the informative talk show whilst observing the six-meter physical distancing protocol. 

Going digital

What was once a media relations and fora only, the Kapihan with PIA Caraga expanded its horizon to include its digital audience. Thereafter, the activity has been livestreamed through the Facebook pages of PIA Caraga. 

The teaser, which is shared to all digital platforms of PIA Caraga, allows the audience to watch and participate online at the comfort zone. 

The reach and engagement were boosted by the online audience participation who raise their inquiries and questions in the aired episode.

Kapihan with PIA Caraga is added proof that technology can bridge distance and physical presence, reaching not only its target clients in the country but also across international boarders. 


Accomplishment wrap up 

Goal focused, PIA Caraga was determined that the episodes of the Kapihan with PIA Caraga would bring the message clearly that while the government is a work in progress, it did its best to provide and deliver services to the Filipino people especially to the grassroots. 


For 2023, the Kapihan with PIA Caraga featured the SIM card registration, the most trending in social media and a public buzz. 

Republic Act No. 11934 or the Subscriber Identity Module Registration Act mandated the registration of all existing SIM cards starting December 27, 2022.

All corners of the argument were guarded by the content masters from the regional office of the National Telecommunications Commission and public affairs officers of the two giant telecommunications companies Smart and Globe. 

The first episode continues to provide the team extensive content for the production and dissemination of information, education and communication materials for both traditional mass media and digital media. 

''As a government information network that can reach the grassroots, we in PIA Caraga, with the sustained efforts of our content curators continue to bring the government closer to the people through public information and dissemination and collaboration with partners and stakeholders made possible through the Kapihan with PIA,'' said PIA Caraga Regional Director, Venus L. Garcia. (RLE/PIA-Caraga)