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2006.2007 PROJECTS





Project Book PDF (700 Kb)
  Heal The Hood

Community-Based Emergency Communication

Using the knowledge learned from recent disasters, which exposed a lack of communication and emergency response, students will investigate all aspects of emergency response to disasters including bioterrorism, natural disasters, pandemics, etc.  The team will build consensus by evaluating public awareness and exploring the types of amenities needed to support emergency response in times of crisis, focusing on special populations.  Students will dissect response models to disaster, research public service initiatives and focus on bioterrorism using knowledge learned from other natural disasters recently.

Based on information from the Illinois Department of Public Health, many agencies and government entities have substantial plans in place for emergency response, however, the communication of this information is not directed to or visible to the public.  Design could be a critical tool in communicating such vital information, specifically when assisting groups of people with diverse needs.

Team design goals will include creating various communication vehicles that bring this information into the public realm.  Various design methods may include the design of educational videos and awareness campaign materials that could be distributed by local government agencies and community organizations (such as churches, Rotary chapters etc.), educating the public on assistance and environments available, how to access them, and the individual roles we play in survival and assistance to others.

After several months of research the team found that messages about disaster prevention and response become secondary in communities that are confronted with more urgent, recurring issues like gang violence. Not only do concerns about chronic emergencies outweigh disaster messages; often these issues are exacerbated by the stresses that occur during an acute emergency. Working with community organizations in Little Village, this team of Archeworks students has focused on creating design strategies that target these chronic emergencies while identifying ways in which these communication pathways can also be used in the case of acute disasters.

The Archeworks Team worked with members of the Little Village Community to develop an interactive Web site to raise community awareness. View project web site www.healingthehood.org


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