Disaster recovery experiences of a South African rural farming community
Becker, Herman Christiaan Johannes
Coetzee, Hendrik Christiaan
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This study explored the bush fire disaster experiences and coping of South African farmers. Participants consisted of seven male farmers (6 = White Afrikaans-speaking; 1 = Black Tswana-speaking). Data were collected using semi-structured interviews, nine months after the disaster, and analysed thematically. The findings showed that the farmers’ recovery was characterised by three distinct, transitioning phases. The first period involved resource-maintenance coping and emotion-focused coping. The second time period was characterised by meaning making related strategies. Finally, the third time period was charactirised by anxiety over reoccurrence and resource-maintenance coping. The results also suggest that successful coping is reliant on the individual's ability to adapt coping strategies continually, in a context-appropriate manner.
- Faculty of Health Sciences