Disastershock: Helping Our Families Deal With Traumatic Times (SSWN Open Access 2020)
Editor’s Note: Here at SSWN we’re happy to share a free open-access resource that was created by one of my favorite school mental health scholars, Dr. Brian Gerrard and other colleagues from the Oxford Symposium in School-Based Family Counseling. Brian writes of this 4th edition of the book, which he has graciously made free to share here with SSWN readers:
“Now in its 4th edition, Disastershock is available free on Amazon, Applebooks, and at disastercopingresources.com. In April, 2020 the Disastershock Global Volunteer Team was formed with 65 persons from 16 countries. Our mission is to translate Disastershock into 20 languages and disseminate it globally to help families dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic. Please help us by disseminating Disastershock to parents, teachers, and other persons working with children.”
Disasters have a way of making everyone feel tense and it is often hard to calm oneself. Disastershock: How to Cope with the Emotional Stress of a Major Disaster is a free book that may be helpful in lowering your stress and the stress experienced by your children and other family members. Disastershock contains 24 different practical stress-reduction exercises for parents, adults, and children. It differs from many other disaster coping materials in that the exercises are described in a clear, step by step fashion that makes implementing them easy. The majority of the exercises are based on extensive research demonstrating their effectiveness in reducing strong stress.
“This is one of the most useful books that I have used in my 28 years as a professor of family therapy and 34 years as a licensed psychotherapist.” Michael J. Carter, LMFT, PhD, Department of Special Education & Counseling, California State University, Los Angeles
“This book (manual) is brilliant in its clarity and simplicity, with easy to follow evidence-based procedures on how parents can immediately help their child/children facing a major disaster.” Teresita A. Jose, Ph.D., R. Psych., Psychologist, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
“This is an excellent book and a much needed one as it provides a simple and practical guide to handling emotional shock from disaster” Professor Cecilia L.W. Chan, Ph.D., Department of Social Work and Social Administration, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong (SAR).
“This is a superb and practical guide with advice and strategies drawn from evidence- based theory and practice. I believe this book will help parents, teachers, and counsellors to support children’s emotional and psychological resilience.” Stephen Adams Langley, PhD, Senior Clinical Consultant, Place2Be, London, United Kingdom
Disastershock has been distributed worldwide for over 30 years in supporting communities dealing with a wide range of disasters including the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake in San Francisco, terrorist attacks in (Brussels, Paris, Lahore, San Bernardino, Parkland school shooting, Manchester bombing, Egypt mosque attack, flooding (Houston), hurricane (Puerto Rico, Florida Panhandle), fire (Camp, Woolsey, Santa Rosa and Paradise fires in California, Australia), tsunami (Sumatra, Indonesia), volcanic eruption (Guatemala). It has been recently updated to include the Covid-19 Pandemic, and it is free to read and download at the link below.
The authors of this book are mental health professionals who experienced a major disaster themselves. Disastershock is now in its 4th edition and since 1989 has been offered free to communities affected by disaster around the world.