This morning I was interviewed by Jo Spargo on ABC Radio Hobart. It is interesting to be asked to answer questions in a 6 minute time slot – and yet within that limit to try to capture the essence of my research and share it with the listeners. I think that I did justice to the work to some degree.
Sharing the results of what I find is very important – sharing with the communities included in the research; with NGOs who are active in disaster planning/response/recovery such as The Red Cross, the Salvation Army, and St Vincents; with all levels of government; and most importantly with other communities across Australia. We all need to hear the views of community members from disaster affected communities, in order to improve how we prepare and plan, how we respond, and how we then support communities to recover their sense of normalcy and of having a positive future. I think that is the most we can hope for – that we can understand what has happened after such a disaster, protect ourselves as far as possible by maintaining an ongoing awareness and new knowledge about how to prepare and respond to another (potential) situation in the future, and maintain our connections with one another, the places we live, and our hopes and dreams – so that we can rebuild our lives afterwards if this happens to us.
I continue to be honoured and humbled by the generosity and courage of those who share their stories with me and are willing also to share their views and reflections of what works best. Our desire to help one another is a key factor in the process of connection and recovery.