Societies and territories of our times, dominated by global dynamics, must also provide development and growth which mimic or are parallel the global developments and growth. This is usually achieved through local governments – municipalities, parishes etc which are public institutions essential for the realization of Local Democracy and the provision of community services. Local government are usually important tools of development in specific regions because they know in depth the ambitions and concerns of local communities.
Local authorities have at present very different assignments, particularly in the fields of rural and urban infrastructure, transport and communications, education, heritage and culture, health, social, housing, environment and sanitation, promoting development, land territory and urban planning and community protection.
This website previously to Direcção-Geral das Autarquias Locais (read as Directorate General of Local Authorities (DGAL)). This body was a central service of the State, part of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers responsible for the design, implementation and coordination of measures to support the Local Government and technical and financial cooperation between the central administration and the Municipal Administration.
The tasks assigned to the DGAL were generally pursued since 1974 by the following institutions: Directorate General of Local Government; Directorate-General for Regional and Local Action; Directorate-General for Regional Action; Directorate General of Local Administration.
I’ve decided to bring this website back to life and will be discussing various ways through which local governments can help to improve the welfare of the local citizens. There are some posts that I’ve already published and they can be accessed by clicking through various topics below.
Importance of Good Health in Community Development
Good health is a major factor which determines the productivity of each person in the society. Health has a very big significant in terms of economic development and prosperity of any nation. It is therefore paramount for all the concerned institutions in any society to strive and provide affordable medical services to the community as well ensure that people live in a safe environment. Of course many governments in the world have been striving to achieve this and other strategies which promote good health. Still there is a lot to be done in almost every part of the world.
Regardless of what measures may be put by governments or local authorities or municipalities to promote good health, there are some factors which yield to ill health which maybe out of control of the concerned institutions; such are health conditions which are brought about by our lifestyle habits (commonly known as lifestyle diseases such as diabetes) or those conditions which are genetically inherited.
The latter cause is one which traumatized me for long and almost claimed my life. I thank God that I survived it. It was back in 2009 when I started feeling pain on the nipple on my right breast. I never took it seriously and I presumed that the pain would go away soon. It wasn’t that I was ignorant, but the pain started about 3 months after my husband and I had moved to the rural area to settle in our farm. We had both retired and there was no need to continue staying in the city whereas we had planned to invest heavily in the produce of healthy Mediterranean foods.
Provision of Better health Facilities in the Rural
The pain didn’t subside as I had earlier thought, but it wasn’t much painful. After about 5 weeks, the nipple started producing some white discharge. This made me become more concerned about the situation. Also it was at that point when I recalled that I had lost my older sister 3 years ago to breast cancer, while my mum also died from the same condition. However, I ruled out the possibility of the disease, since I had gone for a mammogram a month or so prior to our moving into the rural area.
I still went to the community health center for diagnosis. The health center wasn’t much equipped since it was located in the rural, and they didn’t have most of the modern facilities. Actually, they had many limited facilities. However, I health specialist whom I met there was very hospitable and upon observation, she seemed alarmed. She requested for my medical history and those of my family.
Even though I had the recent mammogram, she still expressed fear that further test needs to be carried so as to ascertain the cause of the breast discharge. She also indicated that there were changes on the breast skin, which although weren’t clearly noticeable, could be signaling an underlying condition.
She advised me that it wasn’t necessary to undergo another mammogram because it could still have the same results as the previous one, but I needed more advanced methods of breast screening. She felt that I had a dense breast tissue, and a mammogram could fail to detect any cases of breast cancer. She wrote her report and referred me to another public hospital in the nearby town. Luckily, she already had contact of the radiologist who she was referring me to.
The following I went to the hospital for further analysis as advised .here, I underwent a breast ultrasound. The reports of the finding were very alarming. The report indicated that I had Stage III Invasive Breast Cancer. This meant that the cancer had spread much which was not a good sign.
Giving Back to the Community
After the diagnosis, I sought professional advice and for the months which later followed, were the worst in my life. I decided to undergo a Breast Conserving Surgery, which was later accompanied by a series of chemotherapy and radiation therapy all which lasted for about one and half years.
This was the most traumatizing moments. The combination of the drugs and the radiations made me to almost go nuts. To make matters worse, the community health center in the rural wasn’t equipped and thus I had to travel to the city whenever time for my appointments came. I lost a lot of weight and I had to rely on special dieting. I thought that I was going to die.
During that time, I joined an online cancer community, who I always shared my ordeal with and they usually encouraged me. After I was announced cancer free, I didn’t know how to thank them. The best thing about them is that when I told them that I would help in raising funds to equip the local community center with better facilities for cancer screening and treatment, they were so enthusiastic in helping me raise the funds as well as create awareness of the disease.