The ARC Approach

The ARC Project approaches research and application for resilience from three different perspectives: community, youth and children.  Each lead researcher and their teams focused their research on a single initiative and then brought it together to compare and contrast findings and develop services and programs specific to each perspective.

Improving Community Services


The ARC Project is leading research to learn from the perspectives of community influencers and service providers, which is coordinated by Dr. Julie Drolet from the University of Calgary’s Central and Northern Alberta Region campus.

The community research focuses on better understanding how community influencers, such as service providers and community leaders in community-based organizations, non-profit agencies, government institutions, charitable organizations, and municipalities promote and foster the resilience of children, youth and their communities post-flood in Southern Alberta.

The following key questions guide the community research:

  1. What programs and services exist to support children and youth in disaster recovery and foster resiliency?
  2. What policy impacts affect population resiliency for children and youth?
  3. How can collaboration be enhanced at the community level to improve child and youth resilience?
  4. What strategies are effective in long-term disaster recovery for children and youth?
  5. How is population resiliency understood and conceptualized by community organizations, social service/health agencies, and other stakeholders?

The overall goal of the community research is to seek and identify the capacities and gaps in the current programming and services of agencies providing support to children and youth affected by the flood in order to build community resilience.

Youth Empowerment


The ARC Project is leading research with youth, which is coordinated by Dr. Robin Cox of Royal Roads University.

The youth research focuses on engaging youth and supporting their empowerment in youth-centric social innovation process designed to build leadership, research, and innovation skills that involve youth in visual storytelling, dialogue, and critical reflection on disasters and resilience building.

The following key questions guide the youth research:

  1. What do youth, particularly those facing multiple barriers as a result of poverty, racism, and gender, identify as the impacts of disasters in their own lives, families, schools, and communities?
  2. What do youth identify as their primary concerns, priorities, capacities, needs and contributions to disaster recovery and resilience?
  3. How do youth experiences, priorities, and resiliency capacities differ from other groups?
  4. What recommendations do youth propose for improving services, programs, and policies designed to meet their needs and/or contribute to their resilience?
  5. How can youth contribute to resilience building in their communities?

The overall goal of the youth research is to provide youth with an opportunity to contribute to community resilience post-flood by creatively designing and implementing resilience activities; promoting dialogue and critical reflection on resilience initiatives in their communities; and building youth-informed and youth-centred capacities that allow them to build skills to be resilient leaders in their communities

Recovery in Children


The ARC Project is leading research with children, which is coordinated by Dr. Caroline McDonald-Harker of Mount Royal University.

The child research focuses on how disasters impact children’s functioning, health and well-being, and how the key influencers in their lives, such as family members, caregivers, teachers, counselors, health care providers, peers, and others can best enhance children’s resilience post-flood.

The following key questions guide the child research:

  1. How are children’s lives impacted by the devastation, upheaval, displacement, and stress–related conditions of disaster?
  2. How do children demonstrate resiliency post-disaster, and how can these resiliency strategies be used to increase the overall recovery of children in a post-disaster context?
  3. What are the cumulative internal factors and external factors that are related and lead to child resilience in situations of disaster?
  4. How can children best be supported post-disaster by key influencers in their lives?
  5. What resiliency strategies can be used to contribute to the development of child resilience in disasters, and thus increase their overall adaptation, recovery, health, and well-being?

The overall goal of the child research is to better understand the lived experiences of children in the post-flood context in order to inform and strengthen their health, recovery, and resilience in the post-flood context. Improved knowledge of resilience and recovery for children and the key influencers in their lives will help to support child-informed resources, programs, practices, and policies, thus contributing to their resilience capabilities.

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