CUS  Vol.4 No.3 , September 2016
The Fire Station as an Essential Tool in Urban Community Development: The Case of Chepo, Panama
Abstract: As the world’s population becomes increasingly urban, efforts to improve the quality of life among the impoverished must turn to cities. The literature asserts that the most successful programs in the fight against poverty are those that are implemented and managed by local community members. Moreover, the personnel in charge of distributing aid must have: 1) the trust and confidence of the community, 2) experience with community outreach, 3) a record of disseminating useful information, and 4) a clear understanding of local cultural traditions. The fire department is an often overlooked community resource that fulfills these requirements. Within the city of Chepo, Panama the fire station has successfully by-passed the thick layers of bureaucracy and is effectively reaching the city’s urban poor. Fire departments in other cities throughout the Global South might consider emulating the example set by Chepo.
Cite this paper: Smith, J. , Coromac, J. and Alvarez, V. (2016) The Fire Station as an Essential Tool in Urban Community Development: The Case of Chepo, Panama. Current Urban Studies, 4, 297-302. doi: 10.4236/cus.2016.43020.

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