When within the blink of an eye you lose everything for which you have worked for years, hardly any words will be able to express your feelings. Disasters take simply everything away from us, even our lives. It’s true that we can’t entirely prevent the disasters, but we can be prepared to handle such situations. To prepare yourself, there is no alternative to learning about disasters and helping others learn.
Natural and man-made disasters both have alarming and long-lasting effects on our lives. In either case, it’s not only you who will be personally affected, but your whole city. Even an entire country can be demolished by their effects; therefore, spreading awareness is crucial. July has been declared National Disaster Consciousness Month, and it is a perfect occasion to spread awareness among the masses about how to rebuild society again after a disaster takes place.
“Disasters” create perplexed and restless environments around us. The long-time prevailing impacts of any disaster are unknown to very few of us. If the people who are directly affected by such incidents are not hurt physically, they may be psychologically affected. The only way to fight these incidents is by creating awareness and making the required preparations.
But first, let us ask ourselves: what is the definition of a disaster?
What is a Disaster?
Any natural catastrophe or sudden accident that seriously hampers or even damages our normal life is known as a disaster. Disasters seriously disrupt the functions of society, often causing vast environmental, economic, human and material losses. Sometimes, the effects are so widespread that the resources of a community can’t be employed for a long time, creating a national crisis.
Types of Disasters
Disasters take many forms and strike us in different ways. Each and every type demands a different kind of awareness and preparation. Let’s find out more about them.
Generally, there are two types of disasters which we confront: natural disasters and those that are man-made.
- Agricultural diseases and pests
- Droughts and water shortage
- Hurricanes and tropical storms
- Extreme heat
- Thunder and lighting
- Winter and snow storms
Man-Made and Technological Disasters
- Hazardous materials
- Power services and blackouts
- Radiological emergencies
- Nuclear power plants and nuclear blasts
- Chemical threats and biological weapons
- Civil unrest
- Cyber attacks
Organizations in This Sector
Sometimes, the crisis becomes so problematic that international organizations are required to contribute, along with local and national organizations. Several organizations work together hand in hand to handle such life threatening national crises.
- The United Nations and its organizations
- Health Care in Danger Project
- The International Committee of the Red Cross Blue
- The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Society
- International non-governmental agencies
- National organizations
Any disaster can break down the social, economic, and technological networks of a community or country, as it can seriously interrupt the essential services of a country, for example water, health care, sewage, communications, transportation, etc. It can have long-lasting negative impacts on its victims. To manage such incidents, we need a proper plan as well as awareness.
The whole program has been divided into four parts:
- Disaster prevention
- Disaster preparedness
- Disaster relief
- Disaster recovery
Not all disasters can be prevented, especially natural disasters, but the effects can be minimized by taking steps like evacuation plans, environmental planning, etc. These programs include plans that can successfully prevent an upcoming disaster; if we can’t prevent it, we can at least minimize the destruction rate.
Preparedness is the most important step; it can remarkably reduce the impact of a disaster. Programs like evacuating people and property from the threatened location, timely and effective rescue, relief, etc. are designed to minimize the deaths and losses of that particular area.
Relief covers a vast area of the programs. To reduce the long-term effects of a disaster, relief is compulsory. It includes food and water services, rescue, disease prevention, repairing services like transportation and telecommunications, emergency health services, relocation, etc.
Disaster recovery includes health care, rehabilitation and the rebuilding of infrastructure. Once the basic and urgent needs have been fulfilled, the initial crisis may over, but the victims and the situation are still in vulnerable conditions. Blending with developmental activities can make the recovery program even more effective and fruitful.
National Disaster Consciousness Month
July has been declared the National Disaster Consciousness Month. It’s the best time to create awareness regarding disasters and their harmful effects. Only knowing about disasters is not enough; proper knowledge regarding prevention and how to tackle these situations is necessary. This knowledge and awareness will not only save you and your family, but thousands who are or will be trapped in these dangerous situations. Different organizations are celebrating this month with various activities, and most of them are targeted to create awareness among the masses. The more concern people feel, the more the post-disaster impacts will be minimized.
Disasters, whether they are natural or man-made, have long-lasting and alarming effects on the societies, economies and personal lives of the victims. Some people become disabled, and some die, but even those who remain untouched physically bear deep scars in their hearts. Only awareness can make us strong enough to face these unwanted situations and give us the courage to fight back and reestablish the peace of an organized society. Let’s celebrate this month by creating and spreading awareness and learning more about the preventive methods to avoid long-lasting effects.