4 Things You Can Do to Help Children After a Disaster
When your home or business is damaged or destroyed in a fire, flood or other disaster, you have a lot to deal with
You’re dealing with the damage or loss of property, documents, equipment, heirlooms and countless other items that help you feel normal. Your family or employees or are looking to you for answers.
It might be hard to keep this in mind, but people are looking to you to help get things back to normal. Especially children who are also coping with disaster.
Help Children Get a Sense of Normalcy Back
It’s crucial to remember that children who go through a disaster can feel intense fear that the event will happen again, continue or worsen, that the event will hurt someone they love, and that the disaster will leave them alone.
Caregivers can help children recover from traumatic events and feel less anxiety about future misfortunate events with these techniques:
- As soon as possible, resume at least some of the children’s daily routine. Something as simple as maintaining their bedtime regimen often signals to them that everything will be ok.
- Encourage children to talk about their feelings and let them know you listen by paraphrasing back to them: “So is it right to say you’re mad about the fire burning up your toys?”
- Share your plans for dealing with future crises with them. Assemble a disaster kit and include them in the process.
- Regularly practice your emergency plan with them.
Take advantage of whatever family and community support networks you have in your area for more insights and support to help children. Remember, they’re resilient, they’re also little, and the world can look awfully big and scary to them. Make sure they know they’ve got someone big on their side (you).
And remember when you need peace of mind in uncertain times, turn to Delta of Southern Colorado.