Disaster Preparedness

Northwestern Minnesota Disaster Response Network

Do memories of a major disaster bother you?

Are you nervous about the coming winter?

Are you tired of filling out disaster-related forms?

Have you lost your job because of the disaster?

Are you running out of time and patience repairing your home?

Are you having a hard time communicating with your family and friends?

Have you asked questions and not received answers that help?

Many people in Northwestern Minnesota are facing the challenges of disaster-related recovery. We are dealing with unusual circumstances while getting on with our every day lives.  However, we may have less energy and enthusiasm than we had before the disaster.

The need to recover from our losses is very natural and can sometimes create physical, financial, emotional, social, and spiritual hardships. We should expect to feel many different emotions and reactions as we rebuild our lives.

Physical well-being:

Recovering form a major disaster can have a lasting impact on our physical health. Some symptoms include: loss or increase in appetite, trouble sleeping, weariness, migraines, upper respiratory (breathing) difficulties, or stomach upset.

Financial hardship:

Our incomes may have been greatly reduced since the disaster. We all have bills to pay and may find the added expenses of rebuilding our homes one more hardship. Everyone in the community has suffered some financial loss in one way or another.


Sometimes it is impossible to recognize or express our emotions during a disaster.  However, once we begin to rebuild our communities we also allow ourselves the time to express our sense of shock, grief, and loss. This may be expressed by confusion, irritability, anxiety, fear, grief, depression, anger, or frustration.

Social Structure:

There has also been an impact on our social structure. Many organizations, families, friends or individuals we normally talk, play, or volunteer with may no longer be available to us since the disaster. Or sometimes as we may not communicate as well as they respond  to their own reactions to the disaster.


Sometimes we can have a crisis in our spiritual beliefs. We can wonder why all this upheaval is happening to us. Having someone to talk to about our circumstances can be an important way to handle different situations.

If you are experiencing any physical, financial, emotional, social, or spiritual hardships as a result of the disaster and its aftermath OR if you just want someone to talk to or know of someone who needs to let off a little steam...then WE ARE HERE TO HELP!