Several factors were associated with recovery patterns including age, gender, consulting with a mental health professional and support networks.  In general, younger children had an increased vulnerability as they had less developed coping skills. Females reported more symptoms of depression than males and those whose reported more symptoms were also more likely to have consulted a mental health professional. Students with concerns about their families were also more likely to show symptoms 3 years after the hurricane.  Overall it appears that a positive environment such as one that can be created in schools contributes to the resilience and recovery of children.  The authors concluded that in disaster planning for children, it is crucial not only to support parents but also to build support through schools and community activities.

"It is not whether our children will recover.  It is how they recover, what scarring remains, and how we can help them achieve their potential"

 

Kronenberg, M. et al (2010). Children of Katrina: Lessons Learned About Postdisaster Symptoms and Recovery Patterns. Childe Development, 81, 1241-1259.