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To know the elements and processes of disaster preparedness

To appreciate the strategic role of disaster preparedness in reducing the number of injuries and loss of life from disasters

We examine the principal facets of preparedness, including hazards awareness, education, training, exercises, and skill building. We discuss social factors constraining hazard perceptions such as lack of awareness, underestimation of risk, reliance on technology, fatalism and denial, and social pressures. We talk about causes of public and government apathy and consider strategies for reducing apathy.

Example 1

Linda davis

Description of Principle: “Family, community and self-learning, coupled with school education can bring a person in the gradual path of knowledge to perception to code of conduct” (Shaw et. al., 2004, p. 46)

Justification: In order for people to comprehend the importance of disaster preparedness and to value it enough to actually act according to the disaster “code of conduct,” disaster management specialists must be willing to communicate with people on a variety of levels. School education is an important first step in preparing for disasters, but community and family education, as well as modeling self-learning, must be promoted. This type of preparedness “has a preventative focus, as timely proactive efforts can save lives, minimize property damages, and save millions of dollars annually which are now spent on disaster recovery” (Banerjee&Gillespie, 1994, p. 138).

Social Work Relevance: Social workers have the ability to help coordinate community and family education regarding disaster preparedness. They can also ensure that their individual agencies and people within that agency are prepared for potential disasters. In their work, they can adopt strategies that “mirror the developmental process described here: motivating people to prepare (precursor variables), facilitating the formation of intentions (intentions formation variables), and then promoting the conversion of intentions to preparedness (moderator variables)” (Paton, Smith,&Johnston, 2005, p. 5). By practicing, assessing and enhancing their own preparedness levels, as well as working with the Red Cross to “create, maintain, and increase inter-organization coordination for disaster response,” social works will “not only increase their own organizational disaster response effectiveness, but will also contribute to the more essential larger community preparedness effort” (Banerjee&Gillespie, 1994, p. 139).

Related Definitions:

Preparedness: the degree of readiness to deliver services in response to a disaster (Banerjee&Gillespie, 1994, p. 131)

Adjustment: all those intentional actions which are taken to cope with risk and uncertainty of natural events (Banerjee&Gillespie, 1994, p. 132).

Readiness: an overall judgment concerning the probability that the organization could successfully perform some specified task if asked to do so (Banerjee&Gillespie, 1994, p. 132)

Critical Awareness: the extent to which people think and talk about a hazard (Paton, Smith,&Johnston, 2000, p. 1)

Outcome expectancy: perceptions of whether personal actions will reduce a problem (Paton, Smith&Johnston, 2000, p. 2)

Self-efficacy: beliefs regarding personal capacity to act (Paton, Smith&Johnston, 2000, p. 2)


A dog sitting on a bed

This poster illustrates an example of building community awareness and preparedness.

A dog sitting on a bed

This cartoon shows how apathy about disaster preparedness has arisen in the U.S. Social workers must work to change this apathy.

A dog sitting on a bed

Part of emergency preparedness is having the appropriate resources on hand. This picture shows some of the items that organizations should have available in case of a disaster.

Example 2

Brodie mueller

Principle : Planning for a disaster can also be looked at from a health belief model standpoint. Therefore, it holds true that the single biggest predictor of the action will be perceived barriers, but also perceived susceptibility. Not only do people not know exactly what to do, but they do not think it will happen to them and disaster is never at the front of our minds. (Paton, Smith&Johnston (2000). When good intentions turn bad: Promoting disaster preparedness. Pp. 1-6. )

Justification : Insurance is the small chance of catastrophic loss, like disaster. But we only think about insurance when we have to pay it, or when we have to use it. But most people do not have a daily appreciation for insurance. We all know it is important to have fire escape plans and fire extinguishers, but not many of my friends, myself included, have these things. Why? Well I will not have a fire in my house, besides where would I get a fire extinguisher? This mentality is common when it comes to disaster planning. It cannot be me and I don't know what do it anyway.

Social Work Relevance : Because we know what keeps people from planning for disasters, (barriers, perceived susceptibility) we can work to remove those barriers and raise awareness to increase susceptibility. This can be looked at from many different lenses, Health Behavior Model is just one. But social workers have many ways to look at the same issue, and eliminate their barriers to action while raising self-efficacy and educating them about risks.

Definitions : Outcome Expectancy: perceptions of whether personal actions will reduce a problem

Self-efficacy: beliefs regarding personal capacity to act

Risk perception: The belief that one is at risk for harm.

Awareness: extent to which people think and talk about a specific hazard

(Paton, Smith&Johnston (2000) p1-2)


A dog sitting on a bed

Questions & Answers

How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
How can I make nanorobot?
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
how can I make nanorobot?
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Disaster and vulnerable populations. OpenStax CNX. Aug 09, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11340/1.1
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