For 36 months, or from February 2012 until January 2015, the IPDEV project was implemented by Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS), the Institute for Autonomy and Governance (IAG) and Development Consultants (DEVCON). The target area comprised 80 barangays in the two provinces of Maguindanao and Lanao del Sur in the Philippines. Final beneficiaries of the project were the Indigenous Peoples in ARMM who include the Teduray, Lambangian and Dulangan Manobo in Maguindanao province and the Higaonon in Wao, Lanao del Sur. The target groups were indigenous traditional and formal leaders, IP farmers and fisher folks, IP women and youth as well as local government units.

Looking back over three project years, the KAS, IAG, DEVCON and especially the IPDEV staff would like to thank all of our supporters! Special thanks to the Delegation of the European Union in the Philippines for their support, to all stakeholders of the project, and especially to the IPs in ARMM. And let’s take a moment to commemorate Raffy Nabre, one of the great minds behind IPDEV, whom we miss every day.

Throughout the three project years, IPDEV had built a broad and solid stakeholder’s network and became an arena for dialogue and exchange.

The project started with the collection of basic cultural data and the generation of information serving as baseline references and cultural information to enhance the promotion of non-discrimination and inclusion of IPs and other sustainable and rights-based activities in the four ethnic groups in ARMM. Result-oriented community-based learning sessions on research and documentation were conducted.

With the publication of its demographic survey data in “The Indigenous Peoples of Mainland ARMM” the project set a true milestone. A total of 31.400 households were surveyed in the targeted barangays. Key Informants Interviews, Focus Group Discussions and community mapping to determine existing community institutions and their level of organizational strength were completed. For the first time ever, this publication gives actual numbers about the IP publication in ARMM. The data has been turned over to responsible national, regional and local government agencies as basis for future use and work in the respective areas.

Download the survey here.


IPDEV identified Peoples Organizations of the vulnerable groups and made them partners in the development process. As of January 2015, out of the 80 barangays covered by IPDEV, 77 are represented in IPOs. A total of 47 Indigenous peoples organizations (IPO) have been officially registered for increased empowerment, sustainable development and participation, 42 of these facilitated by IPDEV.

The project has completed data collection and information gathering for the three Ancestral Domain Sustainable Development and Protection Plans (ADSDPP) for the Teduray, Lambangian and Dulangan Manobo tribes. These have been validated, adopted and printed in English and Tagalog. The ADSDPPs have then been turned over to the communities, LGUs and other stakeholders.

For the Higaonon in the 4 barangays covered by IPDEV in Wao, Lanao del Sur the project has completed the data collection and information gathering for four Barangay Development Plans (BDP) – one for each of the four barangays. The BDPs have been printed and turned over to the Higaonon communities.

As of January 2015, a total of 54 Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representatives are now in place at barangay, municipal, provincial and regional level for better political participation of IPs.

IPDEV has held various Exchange and Networking meetings, such as an IP Women’s Summit on the occasion of the International Women’s Month Celebration which was attended by more than 350 IP women from the Teduray, Lambangian, Dulangan-Manobo and Higaonon tribes and also other IP tribes from Wao. On the occasion of IPRA Thanksgiving Day IPDEV held the first ever IP Cultural Festival in Cotabato City from 27-30 October 2014. It was the first of its kind as the IPs in ARMM never celebrated a cultural festival among themselves before. The event gave the IPs and the municipalities an opportunity to work together as a group and show-case their respective area/ tribe in the event by presenting a tribal house with tribal products, food, traditional songs, dances, games, plays. A total of 286 participants attended the event (162 male, 124 female) and all 12 municipalities that are part of the IPDEV project participated in the event.

In numerous trainings of different kinds and on various topics IPDEV has expanded and enhanced capacity and skills among the IPs in ARMM. To name just a few:

2,840 individuals (1494 male, 1346 female) and 2706 of them IPs were trained on "leadership", "rights based approach to development", "organizational management", "conflict management" and "participatory rapid appraisal".

1,300 individuals were trained as Para-technicians (816 male, 484 female), and 1261 of them were IPs.

168 individuals from the four communities were trained and qualified as para-legals.

Another 223 IPs (153 male, 70 female) have been trained on Sustainable Agriculture, Upland Farming and Coastal Resource Management.

139 IP farmers and 2 Tribal Leaders (117 men, 24 women) were selected among the many community volunteers and para-technicians and have been trained on Natural Resources Utilization and Management Plans.

In multiple visits 146 para-technicians) were trained on sustainable agriculture technology providing them with theoretical and practical knowledge and skills on how to transform land into fruitful, diversified farms. Other Trainings on Sustainable Agriculture, Upland Farming, and Coastal Resource Management trained a total of 223 people.

Individual Farm Lot Plannings were done with 1316 participants (831 male, 485 female), 1279 of them being IPs.

Moreover, the project has held Trainings on Advocacy and Campaign Management reaching 189 participants. On top of that, the project’s Socio-legal advocacy and campaign events, such as the March 2013 IP women summit or the December 2013 IP Summit, saw 640 participants.

IPDEV’s Regional Roundtable Discussions on IP Advocacy informed about and discussed IP issues with almost 100 people on different occasions and our National Round-Tables on IP Advocacy have reached engaged about the same amount of decision makers at national level. These regular regional and national roundtable discussions on IP rights and discrimination, raised awareness among ARMM and National Agencies and decision makers about the need to systematically improve the legal and socio-economic situation of the IP in the ARMM.

With these and many other activities, the IPs in the ARMM have been equipped with fundamental and rights-based knowledge and skills towards the promotion of indigenous knowledge, systems and practices and have been trained to eventually increase their active participation in local governance and to effectively advocate and protect their rights.

All three project partners will continue to work towards IP empowerment in the ARMM even after the IPDEV project ends. Thanks to the developments and results achieved by IPDEV, future initiatives will have a solid foundation to build on and sustainability has thus been guaranteed.

Fiyo teresang, Fiyo Bagi & Meuyag!!!