What is Secondary School Students’ Awareness on Disasters? A Case Study
Keywords:Disaster, Awareness Level, Secondary School Students
The behaviors of individuals on the issue of being able to cope with disasters are directly proportional to their level of preparedness and awareness. For this reason, revealing the individual’s level of awareness on disasters is both the first phase of the studies to be carried out on this issue and an important contribution to the social disaster management studies. The aim of this study conducted in this regard is to determine the basic disaster consciousness and awareness level of secondary school students. The study was designed according to case study technique from qualitative research methods. The study group was composed of fifty students attending the secondary education institutions in Konya. The data obtained through the structured interview technique was evaluated through the descriptive analysis method. Accordingly, it was concluded that secondary students classified the disaster concept as a phenomenon related only to natural factors, failed to identify the human factors causing the disaster, classified the disaster types as natural disasters and failed to classify the dimension of the disasters, lacked sufficient knowledge in disaster preparedness as well as predictions with regards to the disaster types they may face in their regions. In addition, students also considered the level of development of the country as a determining factor in disaster management. In light of these results, education on disasters should start in the family and be developed through local municipalities and non-governmental organizations in order to raise awareness regarding disasters.