Reproductive Health Materials Working Group Agenda & Minutes of Meeting May 22, 1996

Translation Glossary

Lucy Harber announced that Family Health International will continue with their plan to take over maintenance of the glossary. As discussed at the last meeting, the glossary will be put into a database software called Multiterm to make the glossary both more manageable and more useful. Brenda Rudder will be in charge of the glossary and expects to have the new version complete by the end of July. Additional languages could be added in the future (e.g., Russian) although the software is unable to handle Arabic. If you would like terms to be added, send your suggestion along with your agency’s translations to Brenda and she will coordinate obtaining the translations from other members. Finally, each organization has one contact person for the glossary. That person may order copies of the glossary in multiple formats for others within their organization.

Institute for Reproductive Health (IRH) New Fertility Awareness and NFP Materials

Stephanie Muravchick presented IRH’s new materials on these topics. They have been developed as a means of promoting self awareness, communication and self advocacy as well as a holistic sense of one’s own reproductive health. There are five modules included:

  • An overview (to be used with community groups)
  • Male and Female Reproduction
  • FP Choices
  • STDs and Prevention
  • Adolescents

The photos which depict either urban Latin Americans or urban Africans are meant to elicit discussion and to address all age groups. The materials include an Educator’s Notebook with text (discussion point, questioning techniques) and pictures. The photos are available in a variety of formats (flipcharts, overheads, slides) and the notebooks are available in both English and Spanish. There was discussion of how the modules were developed and how providers would be trained before actually using them.

AID Communications Guidelines

Maria Busquets-Moura gave a brief overview of the history and description of the AID Communications Guidelines. They were created in response to criticism from Congress that funds were being spent on high cost publications. Since then, a clause has been added to all Cooperative Agreements regarding the guidelines. In general, all communication products (videos, hard copies, slides, etc) produced with AID funding must be approved by the Legislative and Public Affairs Bureau (LPA) of AID if the product will: be given to Congress, cost more than $25,000 to produce (costs included are research, consultant fees, writing, layout, design, printing, etc), over 51% of copies will be distributed in the US or it does not follow the specifications outlined in the Guidelines. In addition to the work of CAs, all mission and bilateral project also have to be approved.

The procedure for obtaining approval is to send an E-mail to the CTO responding to the following questions:

  • What is it?
  • How many will be produced?
  • How much does it cost? (Costs should be broken down.)
  • What is the distribution plan?
  • How will it be evaluated?

It may be best to ask your CTO to either provide you with a copy of LPA#s approval or to send you a message stating that approval has been received.

She said that it is not necessary to adapt materials to fit the guidelines, instead organizations should produce the materials they feel are necessary and needed. If a proposed publication doesn’t meet the guidelines, the organization will need to justify why it differs from the guidelines.

The people to contact at LPA if there are any questions are: Suzanne Chase or Joe Fredericks.

In addition to LPA, the Office of Procurement also has to approve all communications products though they have delegated their authority to the CTOs.

RHMWG Home Page

Peggy D’Adamo presented the proposed RHMWG web pages to the group. The group approved the general design of the pages with the following discussion and comments.

  • Cooperating agencies should continue to develop their own home pages and distribute materials via e-mail if possible.
  • It was decided that the minutes of the group will no longer be mailed out. Instead, they will be posted on the Web Page. For those without Web access, copies will either be emailed or faxed to them.
  • The RHMWG should help to “host” cooperating agencies & other reproductive health groups who don’t have web pages of their own by putting up info pages for them.
  • We should develop a plan to promote the RHMWG pages to others who would find them useful: USAID missions with Internet access and others.
  • We need to develop a format for how to list new materials and works in progress so all will look the same. The group determined that each list should be organized so that Published and Forthcoming Materials are presented on separate pages. Categories will be developed for types of materials (videos, journals, etc). Each entry should include the title, date, authors (if applicable), a brief description, languages, cost, and video formats, series numbers, volumes, etc. as applicable.
  • Five groups will share the maintenance of the web site for now; the committee will propose an equitable distribution and put the plan into place before the next meeting. Each of those groups will be responsible for their own new materials/works-in-progress pages & a few other pages. For now the groups are: MSH, JHPIEGO, AVSC, INTRAH and CCP. FHI will soon join in too.
  • Other groups should know that PRB will be putting together a “superpopulation” page of links.

Training Materials Database

Lisa Croucher, Cathy Murphy and Victoria Kimm presented the results of the survey they distributed on the incorporation of the Database into POPLINE as well as the new input form and answered the questions they had received. Of the 20 questionnaires sent out 15 were returned and all 15 respondents agreed to the incorporation into POPLINE.

  • It was suggested that an electronic input form be developed. While they will put the form on the RHMWG Web Page so that it can be downloaded or printed out, it will still be necessary to mail the form along with a hard copy of each document to POPLINE. Only materials submitted using this form will be tagged as part of the database.
  • E-mail reminders will be sent quarterly to encourage people to update and edit their included materials. The emails will be sent to the contact noted on the survey.
  • The Database will be searchable in POPLINE using “RH Training Materials”. While this term does not capture all types of materials produced by member organizations, a term is needed to make it possible for only these materials to be selected in a search.
  • While it is possible to determine the overall number of items requested, where requests originated and the percentage of requests filled, this is not possible by item. POPLINE does not have a way of keeping track of who has requested which documents or even of how many requests have been received for a specific documents. Unless there is a critical need for this information, they will not develop such a tracking mechanism. Since many of the materials in the Database are too long for PCS to provide free copies, most requests will go to the appropriate CA.
  • Changes (deletions or changes to records) to POPLINE can only be made once a year. All changes must be submitted by October 1. Changes won’t actually appear in POPLINE until Spring of the following year.
  • Although abstracts cannot be reviewed, an organization can have maximum input into the process by filling out the short form and submitting an abstract. It should be noted that any abstract submitted to POPLINE may be edited.

Everyone who currently has materials in the Database received (or will be mailed) a packet containing a letter, the survey results and a copy of their materials currently in the Database, as well as a copy of the new input form. The Database entries should be reviewed for accuracy, contributors should make any changes and submit directly to POPLINE.

In addition, INTRAH will send a letter to all current holders of Database binders telling them of the switch to POPLINE. If the organization does not have access to POPLINE, they will be directed to the nearest CDROM site. INTRAH will also contact other CAs and invite them to contribute materials or have existing items flagged.

Future of the Group

At the suggestion of Elizabeth Ralston, it was decided that a survey will be developed to determine if the RHMWG is meeting the needs of its members. The survey will be addressed to all members (both those who do and do not attend meetings regularly). It was decided to develop an evaluation form which could be sent out to members and groups invited via e-mail. The form could evaluate meetings in terms of content and structure, the impact of the group on individual organizations, whether it has actually helped avoid duplication or encourage collaboration. Peggy D#Adamo and Elizabeth Oliveras will work with Elizabeth Ralston to develop and disseminate the survey. We hope to have the results available in time for the next meeting.

We discussed ways to encourage the participation of members who do not generally attend meetings. One possibility is to have those members who do attend act as buddies to organizations that does not attend, encouraging them to attend or at least offer input, the buddy might also offer to present their materials list for them at meetings.

We also proposed having more detailed presentations on new materials or works in progress (like Stephanie’s presentation).

Administrative Items

The next meeting will be held at 9:30 am on Wednesday November 6 1996. The tentative location is AIDSCAP. We also discussed the possibility of holding the May 1997 meeting in North Carolina. We would like feedback from group members on this.