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SAMHSA Disaster Resources

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) supports preparedness efforts by states, U.S. territories, tribes, and local entities to deliver an effective mental health and substance use-related (behavioral health) response to disasters. SAMHSA helps states and communities with disaster behavioral health preparedness and response issues directly, as well as through the SAMHSA Technology Transfer Centers (TTCs) and the SAMHSA Disaster Technical Assistance Center (DTAC).

The following list of materials includes those focused on general behavioral health needs after tornadoes, as well as separate sections listing materials for faith-based communities and spiritual leaders; children, families, and schools; older adults; people with disabilities and access and functional needs; and disaster responders. The list concludes with resources to help people address acute needs.

General Disaster Response and Recovery Information

  • Tips for Survivors: Coping with Anger After a Disaster or Traumatic Event—Developed by SAMHSA, this tip sheet intends to aid survivors in coping with bouts of anger that may follow disasters or traumatic events. The tip sheet describes the physical changes that may indicate anger and provides guidance for coping and integrating positive habits into your life, as well as resources for additional support.
  • Be Red Cross Ready: Taking Care of Your Emotional Health after a Disaster (PDF)—This fact sheet from the American Red Cross lists common reactions to a disaster, identifies ways for survivors to cope effectively, and highlights signs of the need for additional mental health support.

    The American Red Cross also offers a web page with the information in the tip sheet: Recovering Emotionally After a Disaster. The fact sheet is available in a large-print edition at Taking Care of Your Emotional Health after a Disaster, as well as in several languages other than English:

Arabic: Recovering Emotionally After a Disaster in Arabic (PDF)

Chinese: Recovering Emotionally after a Disaster in Chinese (PDF)

French: Recovering Emotionally after a Disaster in French (PDF)

Haitian Creole: Recovering Emotionally after a Disaster in Haitian (PDF)

Korean: Recovering Emotionally after a Disaster in Korean (PDF)

Spanish: Recovering Emotionally after a Disaster in Spanish (PDF)

Tagalog: Recovering Emotionally after a Disaster in Tagalog (PDF)

Vietnamese: Recovering Emotionally after a Disaster in Vietnamese (PDF)

  • Coping After Disaster—The American Psychiatric Association provides online information about common reactions to disasters in adults and children and steps that survivors can take to manage disaster reactions and cope effectively. Also presented are links to resources on recognizing signs of trauma, coping and recovery after specific types of disasters, and mobile apps for stress management.
  • Disaster Relief & Recovery Services: Recovering Financially—The American Red Cross offers online tips for recovering from the financial challenges that survivors of disasters may face. Tips focus on insurance claims, bills, and debt. Also provided are agencies to contact for lost vital documents, such as government-issued IDs and passports.