Anger and despair increasingly evident.
Article Type: Brief article
Subject: Disaster victims (Social aspects)
Earthquakes (Social aspects)
Earthquakes (New Zealand)
Pub Date: 02/01/2012
Publication: Name: Kai Tiaki: Nursing New Zealand Publisher: New Zealand Nurses' Organisation Audience: Trade Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Health; Health care industry Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2012 New Zealand Nurses' Organisation ISSN: 1173-2032
Issue: Date: Feb, 2012 Source Volume: 18 Source Issue: 1
Topic: Event Name: Christchurch, New Zealand Earthquake, 2011 Event Code: 290 Public affairs
Geographic: Geographic Scope: New Zealand Geographic Code: 8NEWZ New Zealand
Accession Number: 282425946
Full Text: The December 23 earthquakes have affected everyone and put many people into a state of despair, according to Christchurch faith community nurse Carol Renouf, who works for The Oak Development Trust, aligned with the Riccarton Baptist Church.

She works with the elderly, particularly at the toenail care clinic she runs. "This is a great opportunity to talk to the elderly about the impact the latest earthquakes have had on them. They also love the foot care we offer, as it is such a pampering, nurturing experience."

Renouf is well aware of the anger towards the Christchurch City Council. "People are getting angry about the things they have no control over. They are trying to fight the bureaucracy but this won't help people build communities. Depression and post-traumatic stress are leading to many families becoming fragmented. Increasing levels of stress seem to have led to an escalation in many people's disease processes."

Renouf is also involved in running six-week "toolbox" parenting courses where she has heard stories from parents of some very agitated children. "These courses have been very well attended in recent months, as parents seek reassurance they are doing okay with their parenting. Each earthquake tests people's resolve to cope and rise above these challenges. We are all getting worn down by the ongoing aftershocks.

"I was away from home in the first of the December 23 quakes and didn't want to return home alone afterwards. Having company and reassurance is so very important at these times."

Numbers attending the Appetite for life courses she helps run have also been increasing. "Earthquake eating"--out-of-control eating--is recognised as a common stress response. "People are seeking out supportive groups and social gatherings to help add some stability to their lives, but many are slipping into despair, especially over the Christmas/New Year period."
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