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Community Resilience and Wellness for Children Exposed to Hurricane Katrina


In this chapter, we describe childhood wellness and wellness approaches, explore the construct of community resilience as applied to Hurricane Katrina, and identify child-supporting resilience strategies for disaster readiness. The impact of disasters on children, families, the programs and systems that serve and influence children, and the community and society at-large can be viewed within the bioecological framework proposed by Bronfenbrenner and colleagues (see, e.g., Bronfenbrenner & Morris, 1998). This framework places the child within nested and interacting systems and processes that foster or impede development and adaptation. As such, models of community resilience and child wellness fit within the bioecological framework. We rely on a general understanding of what occurred primarily in New Orleans, rather than on specific empirical data that the behavioral and social sciences are only now delivering, as we elaborate and link theoretical concepts of community resilience and child wellness in relation to this catastrophe.

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Full Citation:

Pfefferbaum, Betty, Rose Pfefferbaum, and Fran Norris. 2008. "Community Resilience and Wellness for Children Exposed to Hurricane Katrina." In Helping Families and Communities Recover From Disaster: Lessons Learned from Hurricane Katrina and Its Aftermath, eds. Ryan P. Kilmer, Virginia Gil-Rivas, Richard G. Tedeschi, and Lawrence G. Calhoun. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2F12054-011

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