Tips For Helping Children Cope In The Wake Of The Tragic Event At Sandy Hook Elementary School

We received this note below from Robert Lebby, the Executive Director of the Association Of Independent Camps. We are all saddened by this tragic event and wanted to pass this important information along to all of the Falling Creek Camp families in hopes that it can be of assistance to your family:

Dear AIC Member,

The events in Newtown, CT were terrible. Nothing can be said to help ease the pain of the families that were directly involved.

As camp directors, we take care of children and every one of us has to empathize with the teachers and professionals at the school. I received the message below from Save the Children. I thought it was worthwhile and chose to send it to you. As professionals caring for the safety of your campers, you may choose to send it your families.

Robert Lebby

Executive Director
Association of Independent Camps

Dear Supporter of Save the Children,

Following yesterday’s tragic events at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT, the thoughts of all of us at Save the Children are with our neighbors in this community that is only about 20 miles from our headquarters.

Even as adults try to come to terms with this unspeakable tragedy, we know many parents, teachers, grandparents and caregivers are concerned about how the media’s dramatic images and heartbreaking stories might affect the emotional well-being of the children in their lives.

To help you know what to say and do to support children at this difficult time, we want to share 10 tips for helping children cope, suggestions based on our extensive experience working with children in times of crises.

Our suggestions below are more fully explained on our website HERE.

  1. Limit television time.
  2. Listen to your children carefully.
  3. Give reassurance.
  4. Be alert for significant changes in behavior.
  5. Understand children’s unique needs.
  6. Give your children extra time and attention.
  7. Be a model for your children — they will learn from your behavior.
  8. Watch your own behavior and make a point of being sensitive to the crisis.
  9. Help children return to a normal routine.
  10. Encourage volunteer work — doing something for others.
    If you know anyone who might be helped by these tips, I urge you to please share the link

As for our own efforts to be of service, we have already established a Child Friendly Space in a Newtown middle school — a safe haven where children can play, socialize with their peers and regain a sense of normalcy. We will, of course, offer any help we can in the weeks to come.

As I hugged my own 11-year-old daughter last night, I realized that the most important thing for all of us right now is to remember that children of any age can be affected by a disaster — and that they look to us to provide them with love, understanding and support.

Carolyn Miles
President & CEO