Disaster Recovery

beyond words logo

The unthinkable has happened - your school library has been hit by a natural disaster, fire or an act of terrorism. Where do you begin to recover materials and equipment? How do you help your students cope with the aftermath? Below you will find a few excellent online resources for both you and your students to help you in your disaster recovery. School librarians can learn more about The American Association of School Librarians (AASL) – information on conference programs, special resources for school librarians, and ongoing education on school librarianship – by visiting www.aasl.org.

Resources for You

AASL Facilities Resources 
The Americal Association of School Librarians publishes this resource guide on facilities/buildings. It includes resources on design, technology, and planning for your library’s physical space.

AASL Funding Resources
Need help funding your new or renovated school library? The American Association of School Librarians’ (AASL) resource guide on funding includes information on federal funding, grants, and other philanthropy so that you can get what you need to get back on track.

Government Documents Go to School pdf icon
Presented to the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) at its 12 National Conference, this downloadable PDF includes an extensive list of materials that can be ordered from the federal government, including both practical information on health programs and materials that provide curriculum support.

Disaster Recovery: Children’s Needs external
The North Carolina Cooperative Extension has collected a series of articles and resources to help your students cope with and process the experiences they’ve had. This list includes articles on play therapy, bibliotherapy, and more specific information for students and their parents on returning home after tragedy.

Emergency Drying Procedures for Water Damaged Collections external
Prepared by the Library of Congress, this page contains specific instructions on how to recover, preserve, and repair books damaged by water and/or mold.

Drying Wet Books and Records external
The Southeastern Library Network has prepared a comparison of five different methods of drying wet books and library records.

Children & Disasters external
The American Academy of Pediatrics provides a well-rounded compilation of practical information about children and their response to disasters. From resources on appropriate responses to specific injuries and conditions to more general information on the emotional needs of children in disaster-stricken areas, this site offers a wide range of help for parents and educators.

Resources for Your Students

The more involved your students are in the disaster recovery process, the easier it will be for them to move forward and let go of traumatic memories. Below you will find a list of places kids can go to become a part of the recovery effort in your school and community.

Disaster Recovery Roles for Kids external
This concise list by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) suggests several ways that children can become involved in recovery after a disaster.

ToxTown external
Designed for older children and teachers, this site offers information on toxins in your community, arising from normal or disaster conditions. It includes an extensive alphabetical directory of clean-up and recovery concerns, and offers both scientific and practical information about specific toxins that may be present.

Resources for children and their parents and educators - Dealing with tragedy
Resources and a booklist on dealing with the issues of tragedy, separation, and loss in general compliled by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC).