This article is also on The Garden Island newspaper website: “Help offered to overcome flooding trauma” – click here.
In the aftermath of the recent flooding on Kauai, local nonprofit Child & Family Service (CFS) is offering families information and counseling support, including how to help their children who may have been affected by the events of the natural disaster.
CFS administers The Parent Line, a free statewide confidential telephone line funded by the Hawaii State Department of Health. Experienced phone line staff help parents to problem solve parenting challenges and child adolescent behavior and are available to help parents learn ways to manage the strong emotions that come with trauma.
The hotline is available from Monday -Friday, 8 am – 6 pm, and Saturday, 9 am – 1pm to accommodate phone calls from parents statewide. The Parent Line can be accessed at 1-800-816-1222 (Neighbor Islands) & 526-1222 (Oahu).
“Once the shock of the immediate situation starts to wear off, family members, and especially children, may continue to have difficulty in coping with the effects of this traumatic event,” said Novelyn Hinazumi, CFS Director of Kaua’i Programs. “The Parent Line helps parents as they seek support in how to talk to their children about the flooding and its impact, and to help families to process the confusion or uncertainty that they may be feeling.”
She noted that the intense, confusing and frightening emotions that follow a traumatic event such as the flooding can be even more pronounced in children and that parents’ protection, nurturing and guidance can speed recovery and support.
“In many cases through the support of family and friends and giving family members time to heal, the normal reactions to trauma are reduced and begin to subside over time,” Hinazumi said. “Should additional professional assistance be necessary, The Parent Line can also provide parents with information about CFS and other community resources available to them.”