Title: Beyond information sharing: stimulating youth recovery and resilience post-disaster through social media

Authors: Ashley A. Berard; Tamara Plush; Robin S. Cox; Tiffany T. Hill

Addresses: Department of Sociology, University of Victoria, P.O. Box 3050 STN CSC, Victoria BC, V8W 3P5, Canada ' Centre for Global Studies, University of Victoria, 3800 Finnerty Rd., Victoria BC, V8P 5C2, Canada ' School of Humanitarian Studies, Royal Roads University, 2500 Sooke Road, Victoria, BC, V9B5Y2, Canada ' Department of Family Practice, University of British Columbia, 3rd Floor David Strangway Building, 5950 University Boulevard, Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z3, Canada

Abstract: In disaster response, social media can perform a critical role in disseminating evacuation information, connecting friends and family, and linking those affected to urgently needed services. Less explored is the role social media might play after disaster in online and offline processes of recovery and resilience - especially for young people deeply engaged in its use. This paper considers the possibilities through the #YouthVoicesWB campaign, which was developed with youth a year after the Canadian 2016 Horse River wildfire disaster (a.k.a., the Fort McMurray wildfire). It offers insight into the campaign - an emergent approach to recovery that created agentic spaces for youth through online and offline interactions. It also examines the value of youth-adult partnerships when building a social media platform aimed at strengthening the voices of youth post-disaster. Ultimately #YouthVoicesWB demonstrates the value of listening to youth; and shows how including youth in recovery decision-making as key stakeholders holds potential for more resilient communities.

Keywords: disaster; emergency response; recovery; resilience; social media; youth; creative arts; action research; voice; policy.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEM.2020.117199

International Journal of Emergency Management, 2020 Vol.16 No.4, pp.297 - 316

Accepted: 20 Apr 2020
Published online: 23 Aug 2021 *

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