In response to our commitment to children and family preparedness, The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) was awarded a FEMA grant, All Hazards Preparedness Training for Children and Adults through Interactive Web-based Gaming.
ACEP developed Disaster Hero, an interactive web-based learning game for children. It also contains instructor lesson plans and downloadable information for parents and other caregivers.
Disaster Hero provides an interactive environment to improve the confidence and coping skills needed before, during, and immediately following all types of disaster events. With the help of our stakeholder organizations, ACEP developed a set of disaster scenarios to test the preparedness skills to the target audiences and to train them in quick-care tips and techniques. Thus preparing them with the skills to protect themselves from hazards and administer self-treatment for disaster-related injuries. Since these courses will be delivered as an online experience, the interactive game is designed to allow learners to spend more or less time on certain components of the training. Depending on their interests and their mastery of the content, the game level could last approximately 60-90 minutes with each segment taking 20-30 minutes.
According to recent research, personal preparedness is a necessary component of effective national disaster readiness. Studies by FEMA and Citizen Corps indicate that despite imminent threats and increased media attention, Americans today are no better prepared for a natural disaster or terrorist attack than they were in 2003. Most people expect to rely on emergency responders immediately after a disaster (Personal Preparedness in America: 2009 Citizen Corps Survey). To address this situation, the Disaster Hero game will teach children and their families how to be self-reliant for a period of time after a disaster.
The Disaster Hero website, www.disasterhero.com, provides easy access to the game and resource material. The game and all resource material is available free of charge.
For more information, please contact:
Deanna Harper, EMT-I
Rick Murray, EMT-P
This program is supported by Cooperative Agreement Number 2008‐GT‐T8‐K028, administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security/FEMA. “Disaster Hero” Interactive Web‐based game training points of view or opinions in this program are those of the author’s and do not represent the position or policies of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security/FEMA.