Hurricanes, like other natural disasters, can cause widespread damage, injuries and disruptions to people's lives. On average, approximately five hurricanes hit the United States every three years (source: American Red Cross).
Similar to effects from other traumatic events, hurricanes can have a great impact on the psychological functioning of children as well as adults. Studies conducted after previous hurricanes show that many children suffer stress reactions, which may last long after a storm has passed.
Mental health services for children and families are a vital part of any disaster relief effort. It is important that parents, caregivers and other adults who work with children (teachers, counselors, physicians, relatives, etc.) have the ability to recognize signs of distress and understand what to do if a child needs assistance. All too often, parents ask: "What should I tell my child?" "How can I tell if these events are bothering my child?" "What can I do to help my child cope?"
With these concepts in mind, 7-Dippity, Inc. and Dr. Annette La Greca, Professor of Psychology and Pediatrics at the University of Miami, have developed After The Storm: A Guide to help Children Cope with the Psychological Effects of a Hurricane.
After The Storm contains information, activities and coping strategies to help adults and children cope with their reactions and feelings resulting from a hurricane and its aftermath. The material is designed in an interactive format, with adult and child-specific pages containing information and activities targeted for the intended audience. In some sections, "joint" activities are included to further encourage positive interactions between children and adults. The book is designed for use with children 6-12 years of age, however much of the information and activities can be adapted for use with older or younger children. To download After The Storm, click on the link below.
For any additional support or questions regarding the After The Storm material, please contact 7-Dippity at 1-866-734-7748 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.