Alberta Resilient Communities

Walking the plank-small

In the wake of the 2013 floods in Southern Alberta, the need to prioritize disaster and population resilience becomes increasingly clear.

The Alberta Resilient Communities (ARC) research project focuses on the experiences of children, youth, and their communities post disaster.  Our aim is to inform and strengthen child and youth mental health through enhanced disaster preparedness, disaster risk reduction, and resilience throughout Southern Alberta.

ARC is a partnership between the University of Calgary, Mount Royal University, and Royal Roads University, and community based partners in High River, Calgary, and the Foothills region.

Over the life of the project, our goal is to:

  1. Develop activities that empower children, youth, and their adult allies to implement resilience building in their households and communities
  2. Contribute to the development of innovative child and youth informed resources, tools, guides and frameworks to positively impact resilience and disaster recovery.
  3. Develop and share information on post-disaster health and resilience among children and youth.
  4. Influence the way programs are designed and policies are created through research informed recommendations.

This project is funded by Alberta Innovates – Health Solutions.

1. Community Influencers Stream
This research stream, led by Dr. Julie Drolet, is interested in how community influencers (such as community based organizations, non-profits, government institutions, and municipalities) best enhance the resilience of children, youth and their communities post-flood in Calgary and Southern Alberta.  The Community Influencers Stream explores the capacities and gaps in programs and services supporting children and youth affected by the flood.

2. Youth Focused Stream
This research stream, led by Dr. Robin Cox, is interested in how young people develop relevant, youth-informed models for engagement in resilience building. Through this stream opportunities are offered to contribute creatively in resilience activities, dialogue and critical reflection about the practices used to engage young people.

3. Child Focused Stream
This research stream, led by Dr. Caroline MacDonald Harker, explores how disasters can impact children’s health and well-being in multiple ways.  The goal is to better understand the lived experiences of children in the post-flood context to enhance their health and resilience, and contribute to child-centered theories of resilience and recovery.

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