On August 13, 2016, many people in Baton Rouge and the surrounding areas awoke to water rushing into their homes in what was later referred to as the 100-Year Flood. Media outlets reported that more than 30,000 people were rescued and about 110,000 homes were damaged in the Baton Rouge area, totaling approximately $20.7 billion in damage. The reports of Harvey’s devastation in Houston and other areas of Texas and southwestern Louisiana are eerily familiar to those from our own city just one year ago.
Children and teens exposed to natural disaster might experience a range of emotional and psychological reactions, including sleep disturbance, anxiety, depression, difficulty concentrating, developmental regression, and withdrawal from friends and family. Parental and peer support are key to the recovery process. Here are some ways to help children cope with the aftermath of a natural disaster:
For additional resources, you can visit the following sites:
American Psychological Association’s Help Center for Disasters & Terrorism - http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/disaster/index.aspx
American Red Cross, “Recovering Emotionally” - http://www.redcross.org/get-help/disaster-relief-and-recovery-services/recovering-emotionally#During-the-Holidays
FEMA, Helping Children Cope with Disaster - https://www.fema.gov/pdf/library/children.pdf
Jodi Manton has served as the Upper School Counselor since 2015 where she provides academic and social/emotional services to Upper School students and their families. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), Nationally Certified Counselor (NCC), and Certified School Counselor. She has a master's degree in education with a concentration in mental health counseling and a Certificate of Education Specialist with a concentration in school counseling from Louisiana State University.