Nothing ever quite prepares us for the amazing difficulties and joys that we find when responding to disasters and crises. Yet, over the past 18 years, we have learned a great deal about the psycho-social needs of communities in crisis. How we, as workers, can best help take care of ourselves while we try to help others.
At the request of several different groups, we have created a brief pocket card that you can carry with you to remind you of how important it is to take care of yourself and those working with you. The strategies suggested are based on the experiences of other people working in crisis settings and on research from around the world.
Please feel free to print as many copies as you like, and to share this card with others.
Our goal is to help you improve your resiliency and increase the positive aspects of helping and reduce the negative ones. We want to promote compassion satisfaction and reduce compassion fatigue, secondary trauma, and vicarious traumatization.
We recognize the enormity of your task and your commitment and the smallness of this card but we hope that it will provide you with a daily reminder of the lessons learned by your predecessors and our compassion for you as you as you work to help others rebuild their lives.
Dr. Beth Hudnall Stamm developed this revised "pocket card" about caring for yourself in the face of difficult work for the current COVID-19 health crisis. A downloadable PDF can be found below. Please use, copy, and distribute it freely, as long as:
(a) authors are credited,
(b) no changes are made, and
(c) it is not sold.
We hope you find it useful.