Mental Health Connecticut is greatly devastated to see the loss that has been caused by the Maui wildfire in the town of Lahaina. MHC sends condolences to Mental Health America of Hawaii, our colleague and fellow affiliate of Mental Health America. As of Thursday evening, many lives have perished, and countless homes have been burned to the ground. Officials don’t know how many people died in the fire in and around Lahaina or how many people may still be missing.

Our hearts are heavy to see our friends in Hawaii losing access to their safe environments. MHC stands in solidarity with all of the individuals, families, and communities that were affected by the loss of their loved ones and we are committed to supporting Maui and their communities through these trying times. #MauiStrong

It is common for people to show signs of stress after exposure to a disaster making it important to monitor the physical and emotional health of those affected as well as those responding to the needs of others. Consider the below resources.

  • The Disaster Distress Helpline (DDH) is the first national hotline dedicated to providing year-round disaster crisis counseling. This toll-free, multilingual, crisis support service is available 24/7 to all residents in the U.S. and its territories who are experiencing emotional distress related to natural or human-caused disasters. Call 1-800-985-5990 or text “TalkWithUs’ to 66746.
  • To connect directly to an agent in American Sign Language, call 1-800-985-5990 from your videophone. ASL Support is available 24/7. FAQs for ASL NOW users.

If you find yourself anxious, sad, angry, depressed, or any combination of emotions after reacting to recent news, first know that all of these feelings are valid. Vicarious trauma is a concept that involves the vulnerability of the human brain to be negatively impacted by traumatic events even if we haven’t personally experienced them. This concept gives us the understanding that witnessing traumatic events or even just having knowledge of the events can have negative consequences on our mental health.

If you are seeking additional resources or immediate ways to support, follow @Mental Health America of Hawaii on social media.

#mauistrong #unitedinaloha