Guidelines on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings
IASC 2007
These quite useful guidelines (191 p.) reflect an emerging consensus on good practice among practitioners. The core idea behind them is that, in the early phase of an emergency, social supports are essential to protect and support mental health and psychosocial well-being. The guidelines provide in addition with selected psychological and psychiatric topics interventions for specific problems.

Disaster Mental Health Handbook 
American Red Cross 2012
These guidelines provide with a good overview about to define disaster, and possible symptoms in the survivors, as well as how to handle the survivors needs. Some advices concerning assessment during the different phases of disaster.

Disaster Psychosocial Response – Handbook for community counselor trainers
Academy for Disaster Management Education, Planning, Training ADEPT 2005
This training manual (95 p.) aims to provide an overview of substantive concepts to assist (target group) psycho-social program administrators, planners, trainers, clinicians in developing the training component of community counseling projects, including how disasters affect children, adults and older adults, the importance of tailoring the program to fit the community, and descriptions of effective counseling interventions. It gives an overview over symptoms, psychological effects on people (children, adults, elderly).

Coping With Disasters – a Guidebook to Psychosocial Intervention
John H. Ehrenreich 2001
This manual (104 p.) outlines a variety of psychosocial interventions aimed at helping people cope with the emotional effects of disasters. It is intended for use by mental health workers (psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, and other counselors), by primary medical care workers (doctors, nurses, and other community health providers), by disaster relief workers, by teachers, religious leaders, and community leaders, and by governmental and organizational officials concerned with responses to disasters. It is intended as a field guide or as the basis for brief or extended training programs in how to respond to the psychosocial effects of disasters.

The Humanitarian Emergency Settings Perceived Needs Scale (HESPER)
WHO 2011
The HESPER Scale was developed to fill the gap between the population-based “objective” indicators (for example malnutrition or mortality indicators), and the qualitative data based on convenience samples (for example through focus groups or key informant interviews).. It aims to provide a method for assessing perceived needs in representative samples of populations affected by large-scale humanitarian emergencies in a valid and reliable manner. This manual includes the HESPER Scale, as well as a detailed explanation of how to use the HESPER Scale, how to train interviewers, and how to organise, analyze and report on a HESPER survey.

Mental health and social health after acute emergencies
Ommeren, Saxcena & Saraceno, Round Table WHO Bulletin 2005
This represents a short overview and consensus about best to cope with disasters, both practical topics and mentioning the necessary social support.

Natural disasters: Overview
American psychological association 2010
This website under the American Psychological Association provides a good overview on the effects of disasters on peoples psyche. It gathers lots of relevant links under the topics coping with disaster, how psychologists help, and some updated news about disaster-effects.

Mind/body health: The effects of traumatic stress
American psychological association 2010
This article is a “fact-sheet” presenting to the target group of survivors an overview about symptoms, effects otherwise, and coping strategies.

Tips for recovering from disasters and other traumatic events
American psychological association 2010
Factsheet that presents in a short version some topics concerning disaster: how do people respond, how should I help myself and my family, when should I seek professional help. Target group: survivors.

Psychosocial aspects of the Tsunami 
IFRC Reference Centre for Psychosocial Support 2005
Factsheet (1 p.)”what you can do right now to support wellbeing” – very practically how-to-do after a disaster had occurred, f.e. how to talk to survivors. Not only after Tsunamis.

Psychosocial interventions – A handbook
IFRC 2009
This handbook (198 p.) presents very solid information and how-to-do about coping with disasters and the psychological effects. Focus on psychosocial support and how to organize: assessments, planning, implementation, training, monitoring. Target group: psychosocial practitioners. 

Psychological First Aid
National Child Traumatic Stress Network, Veteran Affairs National Center for PTSD 2006
Contains intervention strategies which are intended for use with children, adolescents, parents/caretakers, families, and adults exposed to disaster or terrorism, and in the immediate aftermath. It can also be provided to first responders and other disaster relief workers. Psychological First Aid is designed to reduce the initial distress caused by traumatic events and to foster short- and long-term adaptive functioning and coping. It comes along with lots of very useful and practical examples (f.e. how to talk to survivors). Target group: mental health and other disaster response workers.

Public health risk assessment and interventions, Earthquake: Haiti
WHO 2010
This “public health risk assessment” was meant to provide health professionals in United Nations Agencies, nongovernmental organizations, donor agencies and local authorities which were and are working with populations affected by the earthquake in Haiti, with up-to-date technical guidance on the major public health threats faced by the earthquake-affected population. –

Guidelines on Gender-based Violence interventions in humanitarian settings
IASC 2009
We know that in times of crises and disaster there is an increased level of violence, in particular in Gender-based Violence (GBV) . GBV is a serious problem also in the context of complex emergencies and natural disasters where normal structures of society are seriously affected and alternative safeguards not yet in place. Women and children are often targets of abuse, and are the most vulnerable to exploitation and violence simply because of their gender, age, and status in society. This website provides with an overview and factsheets on that topic.

Managing stress in humanitarian workers – Guidelines for Good Practice
Antares Foundation 2006.
This is a collection of some principles to be followed in organizing help after disaster, with focus on support for the mental health workers. Disasters aftermath and coping with that and survivors needs can be for the helpers a source for compassion fatigue, vicarious traumatisation or secondary traumatic stress (STS). Early recognition and awareness is crucial to be resilient to these symptoms. Awareness of this is important for workers in areas of conflict and disaster, and in extreme environments such as these, people may be more vulnerable to secondary traumatization. Target group: humanitarian organizations and their staff. 

Trauma Center Resources – Handouts, Interviews, Resources for First Responders
Trauma Center at Justice Resource Institute 2007
On this website of the Trauma Center we find a collection of very useful links to handouts and articles about the topic of disaster and its consequences, as well as links to resources for first responders (target group) .

NCTSN 2010
This is the main page of NCTSN concerning Natural Disasters. It provides with the most important links under this topic – earthquakes, epidemics, fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and tsunamis. Under each of these pages you will find lots of very useful links and articles as well, with essential description of situations, symptoms, and how-to-cope procedures.

Field Manual for Mental Health and Human Service Workers in Major Disasters
This Field Manual is intended for mental health workers and other human service providers who assist survivors following a disaster. This pocket reference provides the basics of disaster mental health, with numerous specific and practical suggestions for humanitarian workers (target group). Essential information about disaster survivors’ reactions and needs is included. “Helping” skills are described with guidance for when to refer for professional assistance. Strategies for worker stress prevention and management are presented in the last section.

Close Menu