It’s been a whirlwind of a week for millions of families on the East Coast who faced the impact of Hurricane Sandy. Here at SCAN, our offices were closed for two days as we dealt with power outages and school closings. In many places, the recovery will last much, much longer.

So what can we do to help children and families in times like these? Today we’re sharing three quick (and very different) ideas:

1. Get involved in the recovery effort. Contact the Red Cross for information on where to make donations, collect supplies or help with hands-on volunteering. Get your children involved in the effort, too!

2. Talk to your kids about the event. Even if they’re not living with it, children will continue to hear about the storm and its often devestating impact at school and in the news. Some stories are scary, some photos are traumatic. Be sure to explain how your family is prepared for a natural disaster like this. Check out our tips and fact sheet (in English and Spanish) on Helping Children Deal with Trauma via our online Parent Resource Center. Also check out the NASP’s fantastic resource page Helping Children After Natural Disasters.

3. Ask for help if you need it. Whether you’re dealing with a flooded basement or just struggling with kids being home from school, reach out for support! Natural disasters and other disruptions to everyday life can be very stressful for parents. If you need time to re-group, manage extra household chores or just vent about the challenges, try to find other parents and adults who might be able to help. You could swap babysitting hours, schedule a group playdate to get the kids out of the house or just chat to share concerns and ideas.

To those families experiencing loss & hardships in the wake of Sandy, everyone at SCAN is thinking of you and wishing you the best.

Do you have a great resource for parents after a natural disaster or other traumatic event?  Please share!

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