May 22nd marks the one year anniversary when a tornado ripped through North Minneapolis damaging 3,700 homes. Lives were lost and families were torn apart. But North Minneapolis is rebuilding. Some homes were repaired quickly, while others remain under construction, and others still remain uninhabitable. In spite of new housing, some residents may still feel like something is missing in their lives as they struggle with the emotional challenge caused by the storm, which can be harder to repair than property damage.
Surviving a tornado can create feelings of stress, anxiety, and fear and experiencing a disaster can be very traumatic for all ages and can negatively impact a person’s overall health and wellness. To help with the emotional recovery efforts, ECHO (Emergency, Community, Health, and Outreach) has collaborated with Hennepin County, Hennepin County Children’s Mental Health Collaborative, the City of Minneapolis, The Minneapolis Foundation, and the Northside Community Response Team (NCRT) to create a unique television program that discusses recovering emotionally from a disaster and being prepared for future emergencies.
The North Minneapolis Tornado is used in this program to demonstrate how organizations and communities can come together to respond to an emergency and work as a community to rebuild physically and emotionally. To help spread this important message to the North Minneapolis’ increasingly diverse neighborhood, the program is available in four languages (Spanish, Hmong, Somali, and English) and each language program features a North Minneapolis community member who survived the storm and a guest expert.
“This type of program is very very beneficial to the Somali community. I don’t think they know much about how to react when they have this type of a crisis and where to go to get help. And all of this information is in their own language, which is very important…” Hassan Ali Mohamud, Imam at Minnesota Dawah Institute.Recovering from the Storm will air on tpt’s Minnesota Channel (Comcast Channel 202 or 243, depending on location) and public television stations across Minnesota, as well as online at echominnesota.org after the first week in April. ECHO will also be distributing free 1,200 DVDs of the program to the community.
The tptMN broadcast schedule is as follows:
• April 8 and May 20 at 7 p.m. in English – Guests: Dr. Lolita King, Clinical Psychologist, North Point Health and Wellness Center, and Patricia Collins, Community Member and Tornado Survivor.
• April 8 and May 20 at 7:30 p.m. in Spanish – Guests: Dr. Benjamin Feigal, Clinical Psychologist at North Point Health and Wellness Center and Humberto Tlaseca, Community Member and Tornado Survivor
• April 15 and May 27 at 7 p.m. in Hmong – Guests: Lisa Xiong, Therapist at Change Inc., and Blong Yang, Tornado Survivor and Investigator for Minneapolis Civil Rights Department
• April 15 and May 27 at 7:30 p.m. in Somali – Guests: Hassan Ali Mohamud, Imam at Minnesota Dawah Institute, and Naima Ahmed, Community Member and Tornado Survivor