Addressing the mental health needs of displaced children and families in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina

More than a year after one of the worst disasters in U.S. history, much devastation remains in New Orleans and the Gulf Region and recovery is moving slowly. Children and families who have returned to the New Orleans metropolitan area continue to suffer from the trauma and face great economic loss, unstable living arrangements and uncertainty about the future. First responders, such as police, firefighters and emergency workers, are experiencing the same stress, while at the same time facing difficulties with staffing shortages and increasing demand. In this collaborative project, the New Orleans Metropolitan Area Family Resiliency Project will address these issues by: (1) enhancing, providing and evaluating evidence-based behavioral and mental health services for children and their families in school settings and for first responders and families in Orleans, St. Bernard and Plaquemines parishes; (2) conducting training for mental health professionals and others on evidence-based intervention protocols through the implementation of learning collaboratives in the Gulf Region in collaboration with the National Child Traumatic Stress Network; (3) developing youth leadership summer and year-long programs to support youth resilience, build self-efficacy and decrease risky behaviors; (4) developing prevention and intervention strategies that can be used to prepare for future disasters and to inform policy decisions; (5) collaborating with other public health and service agencies in the heavily impacted areas to enhance service accessibility for children and families; and (6) conducting awareness building training for child-serving professionals and first responder counselors to increase their knowledge, capacity and ability to make appropriate referrals.

Grant Details

Amount Awarded $749,695.00

Awarded on: 1/26/2007

Time frame: 2/1/2007 - 1/31/2009

Grant Number: 59474


Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center

Suite 800
1600 Canal Street
New Orleans, 70112-2854


Howard J. Osofsky
Project Director


Joy D. Osofsky
Project Director