How to help child victims of Disaster
Children that have been victims or disaster may exhibit any of the following:
  • Over concern for material objects &/or things adults find unimportant.
  • Change overall behavior - from loud to quiet and vise versa.
  • Increase in fear and anxiety.
  • Be whiny; easily upset.
  • Distrust of people and events around them.
  • Become more dependant on parents presence/attention.
  • Regress behaviorally.
  • Display feelings of guilt.
  • Display physical aliments.
  • Worry about the future.
What can adults do?
  • Allow child to express in their own words their understanding about what has happened.
  • Listen without judgment even if what they are expressing may seem silly & insignificant.
  • Be honest and clear when explaining the event; but do not give more information than what they are asking.
  • Allow all thoughts, feelings, and expression within the realm of safety.
  • Remind them that they are safe& taken care of.
  • Encourage creative expression of feelings.
  • Give them choices, and let them have some control over daily activities.
  • Spend extra time explaining your absence when you are leaving home.
  • Allow grief to be a process.
  • Take care of YOU, so you can take care of them!!!
Activities for Children
Children communicate through play. Without the verbal skills to actively share how they are feeling, it is easier for them to express thoughts & feelings through playing.
  • Encourage physical activities.
  • Play games, promote imaginative play.
  • Read books, have them create stories.
  • Create music with various forms of musical instruments.
For more information or to speak to someone concerning disaster debriefing, please call Healing House, (337) 234-0443.
HEALING HOUSE is a non-profit agency focused on helping children through grief issues.


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