The City Council of Cagayan de Oro is currently deliberating whether to provide potable water supply in some upland villages. Unfortunately, our beloved city is facing a looming crisis-insufficient supply and access to safe drinking water. This is mainly because of the lack of latest technology, financial support and sense of urgency to utilize and maximize available water resources. Sadly, whenever heavy rainfall is experienced in Cagayan de Oro which results to urban flooding, supply and the quality of water is sometimes compromised.
One cannot help but wonder; in this age of technology, how come there are still residents who do not have access to safe drinking water? This is the most basic necessity of every life form. Without water, no specie will survive. Access to safe water is greatly considered part of every right of not just human being but of all those who depend on it for survival. It is sad to note that in our efforts to make Cagayan de Oro a bustling city in northern Mindanao, we forget to give attention to the basic needs of Kagay-anons and that is access to safe, potable drinking water.
Apparently, most of our elected city legislators are more concerned with the budget required in addressing this concern rather than providing the immediate need of their constituents. It is in this light that I would commend councilors Girlie Balaba and Ed Cabanlas for prioritizing the provision of water supply in areas where water has been unavailable for quite some time. It is imperative to have a long-term plan supported by latest infrastructure for sustainable water supply that will address the increasing demands of our growing city.
The Cagayan de Oro Water District plays a vital role in the delivery of this vital, basic service. Being the sole water provider in the city, they are at the frontline in addressing immediately all concerns pertaining to water supply, even the quality of water.
The purpose of water for mankind, plant and animal is extensive. There is no existence of life without water. The access to a safe and affordable water supply for drinking is universally recognized as a basic human need.
Depression a serious case
Depression is a grim reality that is happening right in front of us. Symptoms of a depressive state of mind are very difficult to determine. Only the person experiencing depression can rightfully claim that his/her state of mind is on a downward spiral and before knowing it, it is already too late. In the first nine months of 2019, there are already 22 reported cases of suicide in Cagayan de Oro City alone. We can expect increase on this number unless immediate intervention from our local government, civil society groups and other institutions are made.
How did we arrive in this situation? What is happening in our society? How come depression has become a prevalent issue among our young generations? Who is to blame? Or what is to blame?
What happened to the Filipino family values system? What are the steps being undertaken by our local government, religious and educational institution to address the issue on mental health? Although it may be impractical and unwise to become dependent on these institutions to solve something that is sensitive as depression. But considering that these offices have the needed resources to curb this growing social problem, the initiative should come from them. It is high time that we provide and include proper education on the issue of mental health to our students.
Strengthening family connection can also help prevent or early detection of depression among family members. And this is where the role of barangay government comes in. The initial approach to address this concern should start from grassroots level. Educate not only the parents but also our youth on the dangers of depressive state of mind. We have several government agencies that are willing to assist a person suffering from depression.
Let us not wait until this problem reaches its critical stage. We have to act on this and we have to act now. We can no longer ignore the fact that mental health problem is happening among our peers. And as humanly as possible, let us have an open mind and an open heart for these individuals who are going through difficult times in their lives.