Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Coping in the Event of a Natural Disaster: Oklahoma

It is unfortunate that I have had to develop more than one post on tragedy this school year. We have sustained a great deal as a nation this year and are truly the definition of a resilient people. 

As the story begins to unfold in Oklahoma there will be numerous questions and strong emotions raised from children and adults alike. Below, I have complied a list of resources focusing on tragedy and natural disasters. Some of the links are repeated from my post on the Boston Tragedy, while others are new. I hope this will be helpful as we deal with this unfortunate event across the country.

Natural Disasters

*Though this pertains to violent acts, similar actions can and should be taken in regards to media exposure.

Coping Activities

Emotional Well-Being
Additional resources can be found on the NASP Pinterest Board: School Safety and Crisis Resources. The Oklahoma School Psychology Association can be found here, though there are no updates regarding the recent tragedy as of this posting (5/22/13). The National Emergency Assistance Team is also a resource to access. 

As we survive each of these traumatic events, we learn from the mistakes we have made in an effort to make ourselves and our environment safer. While we cannot put a stop to natural disasters, we surely can prepare ourselves. As the governor of Oklahoma stated having a plan in place, practicing, and following said plan can make a difference. The teachers in the schools affected we able to either evacuate students or follow the safety plan for those unable to leave the school. There is also a need to ensure schools have adequate shelters, which is less common in older schools. In the case of natural disasters, it is about preparation, in order to save lives.

While the northeast is not as susceptible to tornadoes (though they can happen), we experienced Hurricane Sandy in October 2012 and the devastation that came with it. Regardless of the type of tragedy (natural disaster or violence), preparedness is key. NASP's PREPaRE Training is a great opportunity to prepare for and recover from those events out of our control in order to maintain, and prevent those within our control. If you have not participated in a workshop, consider doing so. I have completed the first training and will be looking for opportunities to do the second (PREPaRE brochure).

Please keep all of those affected by this terrible tragedy in your thoughts and prayers as they attempt to recover. Consider donating money or sending items to aid this process. 

Stay strong and carry on.

Until next thyme,


  1. I really enjoy your blog, I've gotten a lot of insight from it! I'm currently a 2nd year school psychology graduate student and will be moving to Massachusetts to complete my 3rd year full time internship. Do you have any advice for me, or tips you wish you had known, before you started internship?

    1. Thank you so much! I'm glad you are finding it helpful!

      I will definitely develop something to help you and others prepare for your internship. Are there specific questions you have in mind?