A Pilot Evaluation of Katatagan Online: Benefits and Challenges of an Online Resilience Program in the Philippines during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Maria Regina Hechanova, Ateneo de Manila University
Arsenio S. Alianan, Ateneo de Manila University
Angelique Pearl Virtue P. Villasanta, Ateneo de Manila University
Jason O. Manaois, Ateneo de Manila University
Avegale Acosta, Ateneo de Manila University
Katrine S. Bunagan, Ateneo de Manila University
Gayle A. Gomez, Ateneo de Naga University


This study examines the feasibility of a virtual peer support resilience program for Filipinos during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study used a mixed-method design with pre- and post-test surveys measuring adaptive coping, psychological well-being, depression, anxiety, and stress. Interviews and open-ended questions in post-program surveys also elicited reactions, learnings, and suggestions of participants. Seventy-one (71) participants, a majority of whom were female (82%), with ages ranging from 20–65 participated in the program. Paired sample t-tests revealed significant increases in adaptive coping, non-reactivity, resilience, and well-being, and significant decreases in depression and stress symptoms. Participants found the program useful, accessible, and appreciated that it was free. However, they also reported challenges related to connectivity, distractions, and time. Participants reported that the program increased their self- understanding, self-care, and resilience skills. Other benefits cited were increased social support, learning from peers, and improved mental health.