Supporting, Enabling, and Empowering Students
One such group needing support would be students aged 12 to 17. Although children who are aged 12 are considered as still part of the middle childhood stage of development, most children within this age group are placed under the adolescent stage of development. They are individuals discovering who and what they are. During this time, identity development takes place as students navigate through various systems such as their family, school and community environments. These, coupled with the influences of media, the larger society, and culture, may bring challenges to their process of identity development. Students in this age group may be vulnerable to the impacts of disaster. Thus, they need just as much care and support after a calamity, disaster, or any other emergency situation as what would be received by children who are much younger. Often tasked with taking care of younger siblings or to taking on more responsibilities in households, the psychosocial needs of secondary students are often neglected or overlooked. During stakeholders meetings held in Metro Manila, Iloilo, and Cebu from November to December of 2014 and in Tacloban on January 2015, Philippine public school teachers revealed that secondary students are particularly vulnerable after disasters and emergencies.
There is thus a need to support, enable, and empower students aged 12 to 17 in order to equip them with the necessary skills, attitudes, values, and knowledge regarding disaster resilience, preparedness, and management. This manual is especially created with them in mind. This manual is to be used by teachers handling students within grades 7 to 12 in the Philippines.