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Helping communities adapt to the New Normal



At the onset of the pandemic, everyone was struggling and panicking on what the health safety guidelines were – instructions varied from person to person and misinformation spread like crazy. A lot of efforts were made by organizations to do what they can in helping combat the spread of the virus, while the rest tried their best to stay at home.

We were one of those organizations, and we addressed the issue at hand in the manner that we know best – through design thinking. We believe that through this way of thinking, we can help reduce the positive cases and instill cooperation among our fellow Filipinos.

Adapt PH, a nationwide campaign led by alumni of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI), has created a toolkit series designed to ‘nudge’ Filipinos to observe safety and security guidelines, as society transitions into the New Normal. The campaign officially launched last July 2020. We identified five key stakeholders, of whom were the most vulnerable during the pandemic – local government units (LGUs), public markets, public utility vehicles (PUVs), schools, and micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs).




To create a convincing but straightforward campaign, Adapt PH used design thinking and behavioral design to study Filipino behavior.

In general, Filipinos are considered relational and outdoorsy — we love going out and traveling to visit relatives, eating outside with friends, and going to malls after church on Sundays. On the other hand, we are heavily advised to stay indoors, observe social distancing, wear face masks, and wash our hands always because of the pandemic. The first question is: How might we influence Filipino behavior into observing the minimum safety guidelines this quarantine and in the New Normal? The solution came in the form of creating the #AdaptPH Toolkits, one for each stakeholder. 


Once the resources were ready to launch, we also created a website and a Facebook page, which serve as channels to deliver bits of content and information from the Toolkits. To date, the website has had 8,000 site visits while the Facebook page has had 214k user reach.

Aside from the Toolkits, we also designed Nudge Posters that can be put up on public spaces, offices, or establishments to guide Filipinos into the right way of observing the health safety guidelines. We produced the Adapt PH Jingle for markets and barangays to play it on blast for their community to hear. The Toolkits were also translated to 3 local languages to reach more and more Filipinos and help them be more adaptive to the New Normal. 

Our aspiration from the very beginning is to reach as many communities as we can. Hence, we curated the Adapt PH Kit. It contains all the open-source knowledge products and communication materials Adapt PH has to hopefully help equip our public servants and their constituents for the New Normal. In total, we have engaged over 240 LGUs from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.