H-NET is spearheading an effort to assist in relief efforts in the Indian Ocean basin by joining with relief agencies, the nonprofit sector, and the media in providing accurate background information about the peoples and cultures of the regions affected by the tsunami disaster. Our collaboration includes the Institute of Rural Health at Idaho State University, which does research for, and provides support to, health professionals and relief workers around the world. For more information about the issues that relief workers face, you can visit the Tsunami Aid Worker Support page at the Idaho State University Institute of Rural Health (www.isu.edu/irh) or Psychosocial.org (www.psychosocial.org) which is part of Actions Without Borders Idealist.org. For more information about how the media can be involved, please visit the Dart Centre for Journalism and Trauma (www.dartcenter.org). You may also wish to visit the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies at www.istss.org.
The central purpose of this initiative is to recruit well-qualified field experts in selected topics related to the language, history, culture, mores, religions, and political practices of areas where relief operations are active. These experts will create fact sheets, provide press interviews, and otherwise offer background information for reporters, journalists, relief workers, and other individuals entering the disaster area. This material will help make the relief effort more sensitive to local cultural conditions and thereby improve the efficiency of these operations. It may also help to reduce the potential for secondary trauma among relief workers exposed to an extremely stressful and culturally unfamiliar environment of death, suffering, and destruction. The briefing and background material will be available from a website offered by H-NET.
If you are interested in assisting, please read further:SAMPLE SCOPE OF COVERAGE
Thank you for your generous assistance to this important endeavor.
Prof. Peter Knupfer
H-Net: Humanities & Social Sciences Online
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