Supporting Children After a Disaster: A Case Study of a Psychosocial School-Based Intervention
- 1.1k Downloads
Children are among the most vulnerable groups during and after a natural disaster experiencing a range of stressors such as fear of death or loss of a loved one, the loss of a home and community, displacement to a strange neighborhood or school, and even separation from their family. This study, conducted in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, after a series of tornadoes struck the city in 2011, examines the Journey of Hope (JoH), a psychosocial program designed to help children cope with disaster related stressors. It employed a case study approach examining the program’s impact through interviews with 5 social workers, 14 program facilitators and 30 child participants. Findings revealed that participating in the JoH helped children: articulate their feelings, process grief, regulate emotions such as anger and aggression, and gain knowledge on how to handle bullying behaviors in their school. This article builds on the literature supporting post-disaster psychosocial school-based interventions.
KeywordsChildren Disaster School-based intervention Universal
- Bandura, A. (1977). Social learning theory. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice Hall Inc.Google Scholar
- Blanchet-Cohen, N., & Nelems, R. (2009). Journey of Hope (JoH) curriculum: Building children’s and communities’ resilience. Victoria: International Institute for Childs Rights and Development(IICRD).Google Scholar
- Cohen, J. A., Jaycox, L. H., Walker, D. W., Mannarino, A. P., Langley, A. K., & DuClos, J. L. (2009). Treating traumatized children after hurricane Katrina: Project Fleur-de Lis™. Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review, 12(1), 55–64. doi: 10.1007/s10567-009-0039-2.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Corey, M., Corey, G., & Corey, C. (2013). Groups: Process and practice. Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.Google Scholar
- Creswell, J. (Ed.). (2007). Qualitative inquiry and research design; choosing among 5 approaches. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Eksi, A., Braun, K. L., Ertem-Vehid, H., Peykerli, G., Saydam, R., Toparlak, D., & Alyanak, B. (2007). Risk factors for the development of PTSD and depression among child and adolescent victims following a 7.4 magnitude earthquake. International Journal of Psychiatry in Clinical Practice, 11(3), 190–199.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Hooks, J. P., & Miller, T. B. (2006). The continuing storm: How disaster recovery excludes those most in need. California Western Law Review, 43, 21.Google Scholar
- Holleran Steiker, L., & Powell, T. (2012). The Journey of Hope curricula: Building resilience after a natural disaster. Fairfield: Save the Children.Google Scholar
- IMF. (2012). Natural disasters hitting more people, becoming more costly. International Monetary Fund. Retrieved from http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/survey/so/2012/new101012a.htm.
- Jaycox, L., Morse, L., Tanielian, T., & Stein, B. (2006). How schools can help students recover from traumatic experiences a tool kit for supporting long-term recovery. Arlington, VA: Rand.Google Scholar
- Kamberelis, G., & Dimitriadis, G. (2005). Focus groups: Strategic articulations of pedagogy, politics, and inquiry. In N. K. Denzin & Y. S. Lincoln (Eds.), The Sage handbook of qualitative research (3rd ed., pp. 887–907). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Kataoka, S., Stein, B., Jaycox, L., Wong, M., Escudero, P., Tu, W., Fink, A. (2003). A school-based mental health program for traumatized Latino immigrant children. Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 42(3).Google Scholar
- Lofland, J., & Lofland, L. (1995). Analyzing social settings: A guide to qualitative observation and analysis. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Inc.Google Scholar
- NASA. (2011). Tornado track in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Retrieved from: http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=50434.
- National Weather Service (2014). Tuscaloosa-Birmingham EF-4 tornado April 27, 2011. Retrieved from: http://www.srh.noaa.gov/bmx/?n=event_04272011tuscbirm.
- Peek, L. (2008). Children and disasters: Understanding vulnerability, developing capacities, and promoting resilience: An introduction. Children, Youth and Environments, 18(1), 1–29.Google Scholar
- Powell, T. (2011). The Journey of Hope curricula: Building resilience after a natural disaster. Christchurch: Save the Children.Google Scholar
- Powell, T., & Thompson, S. J. (2014). Enhancing coping and supporting protective factors after a disaster findings from a quasi-experimental study. Research on Social Work Practice, 1–11. doi: 10.1177/1049731514559422.
- Richards, T. J., & Richards, L. (1994). Using computers in qualitative research. In N. Denzin & Y. Lincoln (Eds.), Handbook of qualitative research (pp. 445–462). London: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
- Save the Children. (2009). The elementary journey of hope manual. Washington, DC: Save the Children.Google Scholar
- Silverman, W. K., Ortiz, C. D., Viswesvaran, C., Burns, B. J., Kolko, D. J., Putnam, F. W., & Amaya-Jackson, L. (2008). Evidence-based psychosocial treatments for children and adolescents exposed to traumatic events. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, 37(1), 156–183.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Stake, R. (1995). The art of case study research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.Google Scholar
- Weems, C. F., Pina, A. A., Costa, N. M., Watts, S. E., Taylor, L. K., & Cannon, M. F. (2007). Predisaster trait anxiety and negative affect predict posttraumatic stress in youths after Hurricane Katrina. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 75(1), 154–159. doi: 10.1037/0022-006x.75.1.154.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Williams, R., & Alexander, D. (2009). Conflict, terrorism, and disasters: The psychosocial consequences for children. In conflict and catastrophe medicine (pp. 553–567). London: Springer.Google Scholar
- Yin, R. (1994). Case study research: Design and methods (2nd (ed ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publishing.Google Scholar
- Young, B. H., Ruzek, J. I., Wong, M., Salzer, M. S., & Naturale, A. J. (2006). Disaster mental health training: Guidelines, considerations and recommendations. In E. C. Ritchie, P. J. Watson, & M. J. Friedman (Eds.), Interventions following mass violence and disaster (pp. 54–79). New York: The Guildford Press.Google Scholar