Working with Children Affected by Hurricane Katrina: Two Case Studies in Play Therapy



In August 2005 Hurricane Katrina hit the Louisiana and Mississippi Gulf Coast Regions. Throughout history, mental health professionals have primarily focused on adults as the identified victims of natural disasters. More recently, mental health professionals are focused on integrating mental health services to children and adolescents. This article discusses the impact natural disasters have on children, and the related traumatic stress response and post traumatic stress disorder often experienced by children. Treating children can be complicated and a developmentally appropriate intervention is needed. Evidenced-based research has shown play therapy to be a developmentally effective intervention with traumatised children. This article presents two case studies of play therapy with children affected by Hurricane Katrina.