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PREPARE SCHOLORSHIP STUDENTS FROM SAUDI ARABIA FOR DISASTER Noor Alhubail THOMAS JEFFERSON UNIVERSITY Abstract This project serves to focus on the students from Saudi Arabia who study outside of the country. Over 189,271 students from Saudi Arabia studies all over the world. Every year the ministry of education opens the registration to the scholarship programs that give Saudi Arabian citizen the opportunities to study outside of the country and get their academic degree. The students get a scholarship in different countries for instance, United States, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, South Korea, India, China , and South Africa. Moving to another country require a lot of effort and preparation because of the new environment, culture, time and weather. All these changes could be a challenge and issues for the students while they are studying and might have a negative effect on their lives. One of the most significant challenges is weather change and natural disaster. The goal is to educate and raise awareness to the students about emergencies event and disaster. The project includes a detailed account of how to prepare and ensure the safety of the students. Prepare Scholarship Students from Saudi Arabia for Disaster Veenema defines disaster as a sudden event that causes loss of life or property (2007). Disaster is sudden and requires people to take preparation measures to ensure their survival. Disaster preparedness is the continuous organizing, planning, training and equipping to survive catastrophes. It is the process of taking relevant steps and measures to prepare for disaster as well as reduce its effects on people and property. This work will focus on the process of helping scholarship students to prepare for disaster either natural or man-made disaster. Many students and families have lost their homes, essential papers and lives because of failing to prepare for disaster (Bradley, 2011). The main issue is that they all assume that they will get help directly when disaster strike. Many people require proper training and control measures on how to handle the situation when it occurs. It is one of the major natural effects that can lead to massive loss of life and property. Examples of disasters include floods, drought, infectious diseases, fire, terrorism , and volcanic eruption. Thus, people end up ignoring the value of disaster preparedness until disaster strikes. It is time for the students to be more educated and prepared. The need for training programs for disaster preparedness for students while they are in another country is an important step toward the reduction of loss of life and property. It will give the students the needed knowledge, skills , and equipment to survive a future disaster in any countries they are going to study (Ligon, 2015). Purpose The purpose of the project is to create an emergency preparedness program among scholarship students from Saudi Arabia. The project focuses on emergency preparedness because many students did not have a background about disaster events and preparedness is the key to survive. Disasters can strike without any warning and quickly, so it is important to prepare. Disaster preparedness had been recognized as a central element in reducing the impact of the disaster (Kunz, Reiner & Gold, 2014). The project aims to educate the students about emergency preparedness in general and specific to a certain type of disaster. The project also involves coming up emergency response training program that students must follow when a disaster occurs in the form of a conference presentation whereby detailed steps and procedures will be given for each type of potential disaster. The information that included in the presentation will be available in different languages such as Arabic and English. Also, it will be available as an application to download it in any device to make sure that it is accessible anytime they need it. Need for the project Disaster preparedness is the measure taken to prepare for and reduce the impact of the disaster. Disaster preparedness is a continuous process that includes a wide range of effort from different agencies and community. These efforts focus on improving the effectiveness of emergency response which can be done by developing a preparedness plan, checking the early warning system, and ensure public training which includes students (He & Zhuang, 2016). Preparedness activities require a contribution of several areas, which start with sharing information, and training to institutional development ( International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent societies, 2000). It helps to predict, prevent and mitigate the impact on vulnerable population which students who have language barrier come under this group of the population. The project is important because It will give the students an overview about the disaster that may face while they are in the scholar’s home country because in Saudi Arabia we face specific type of disaster that is specific in a certain region. The northwestern region of the Kingdom is prone to earthquakes and volcanic hazards, whereas the central and western region is prone to floods. In addition, the central and eastern region usually face dust storm and shifting sand (Al-Bassam, Zaidi & Hussein, 2013). The project provides information that guides students on how to prepare for an emergency and take appropriate measures to protect themselves. This will include information and guidelines on how to develop an emergency plan and disaster supply kit. Practicing your plan and knowing how to respond is the most essential part of preparedness (Altizer, Lynn & Murray, 2018). It will help the students to identify who to speak with local agencies in the scholar’s home country in case of crises and how to check the local emergency station and receive the emergency weather alerts from the National weather service. Literature review Disaster is the event that in the majority of cases occurs unexpectedly and causes significant damages, losses, and hardships. Disasters may have different origins, such as natural, social, technological, and human-made (IFRC, n.d). Disaster disrupts the community and causes human, material and environmental losses which are over the community ability to respond with their own resources. In 2017, over 291 natural disasters events were reported that includes those from drought, floods, wildfires, earthquakes and more, with 9,066 deaths. In addition, this number is an estimated without the other types of disaster (Ritchie & Roser, 2018). The four phases of disaster management are; mitigation, preparedness, response , and recovery. Mitigation refers to the necessary actions made to prevent and/or reduce the chances of a disaster from occurring. Efforts are made to minimize the effects a disaster or catastrophe has on society. Preparedness refers to the level of readiness a given community has in the event a disaster occurs. Emergency departments collectively work together to establish a set of guidelines that contain a response methodology consisting of communication, coordination, and cooperation. The response is solely based on the level of preparedness in any given community. The preventative and mitigative measures that were taken place before the disaster occurred will dictate the level of response needed. A successful response is carried by effectively communicating, coordinating, and directing available resources efficiently, in a timely manner. Response levels vary based on the nature of the event, and it's important that the appropriate resources are utilized to ensure the lowest amount of casualties. Recovery focuses on dealing with the after-effects of a disaster event. Once response efforts are in full-effect, recovery departments assess and analyze the damages dealt with in a community. Their objective is to restore the community to normality ( The Federal Emergency Management Agency, n.d). Disaster preparedness is an essential part of the four phases of disaster which require a lot of effort from the whole community. This effort includes planning, training and educational activities such as developing disaster preparedness plan, exercising the plan and check the availability of resources. The United States Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) explained preparedness as continuous cycle of planning, organizing, training, equipping, exercising, evaluating and taking the needed action to ensure that we have effective coordination during the response ( (Department of Homeland Security, 2018). If the community well prepared it will reduce adverse effects of a hazard including loss of life and property and disruption of livelihoods. In a comprehensive disaster preparedness strategy includes nine elements, hazard, risk and vulnerability assessment, Response mechanisms and strategies, Preparedness plans, coordination, information management, early warning system, resource mobilization, public education, training, and community based disaster preparedness (IFRC, 2000). Public education and training are significant to the disaster preparedness, using the knowledge, education and training help to build of a safety and resilience at all levels in the community. It is important to involve the whole community in disaster education and training to ensure that we build their capacities in coping mechanism and make them more confidence. To ensure that we have a good result from the education and training we should have practical participation from the community and general public agencies (Newport & Jawahar, 2003). The United Nations Educational, scientific and cultural organization noted that in disaster preparedness educational planner should include, an early warning communication, evacuation exercise, first aid, search and rescue, prepositioning supplies, teacher’s guides, and international students guide. In addition, FEMA state that the discussion about preparedness for students is increasing because disaster is affecting universities campuses badly and United State institutions of higher education are required to have an emergency response and evacuation plan. One important reason for that is the universities are themselves communities that have a population from everywhere with a different culture, background ,and languages (Ligon, 2015). The Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency has provided more than $3.2 million as part of FEMA's Disaster Resistant University (DRU) program. The program helps universities and college to implement pre-disaster natural hazard mitigation program to reduce the risk to students and faculty. This program established because disaster has affected universities and colleges with severe injuries and some deaths. The program aims to lessen or eliminate losses (FEMA, 2004). Several higher education institutions have a desire on many levels to be more prepared because improving their resistance to a disaster will protect administrators, faculty, staff and students lives. In addition, it will safeguard university instruction, research ,and public services (FEMA, n.d). One example of building community preparation through education and training was in Taiwan. Their program consists of three unit, the first unit was about a participatory process in order to encourage public involvement in the hazard mitigation. The second unit was about basic responding skills and third unit was about practical disaster exercise. The aim of the project was to involve the community toward protecting their lives and properties, authorize the community to take action to decrease their risk of loss, and encourage the ability of the community to continue to improve their quality of life (Chen, Liu &Chan, 2006). The remarkable accomplishments from that project were that the community established a database about the current rescue equipment, refuge facilities and a list of vulnerable people through comprehensive surveys. According to Ligon 2015, all population is vulnerable to the disaster. Nowadays, globalization has resulted in more people migrating and study outside of their country, these populations are more vulnerable. For example, the Sumatra–Andaman earthquake in 2004, kills a lot of people half were foreign tourist, migrants, and international students. These populations usually at risk because they are unaware of the warning system in other countries and how to be prepared. International students populations are significant in the world of disaster preparedness because they are venture to new countries where they may face hazardous which they are unprepared for. Some of the students struggle after the disaster because they do not become fully connected with the new communities. It is important to develop and explain the importance of disaster preparedness plan before they move to the new communities. However, there is a little research on disaster preparedness for students who study abroad, that’s why higher education institutions should prepare plans for international students with consideration of challenges that may face such as language barrier (Ligon, 2015). International students are viewed as a vulnerable group because of several external factors. Some of these factors are living in hazardous areas, language barriers and inaccessibility of needed resources. In the case of language barriers, this can cause significant challenges during and after a disaster. For example, in the Christchurch Earthquake 2010-2011 migrants and international students faced language challenges which caused a delay in getting the needed support and increased miscommunication. In addition, international students experienced a lack of knowledge about supporting agencies and how it functions (Christian, 2018). According to the Ministry of Education statistic for 2016/2017, the number of students who study outside of the county was about 189,271 students in 22 countries all over the world (Ministry of Education Database, 2017). The United States come at the beginning of the list with 67 thousand students with 36 thousand dependents. The United Kingdom comes in second place with 14 thousand students and 16 thousand dependents. In addition, the number of students distributed in many different countries such as China, South Korea, Turkey, Japan and more (Learn about the number of Saudis, 2017). One of the requirements for the scholarship program that the students attend Forum that holds in three different cities at different times. The cities are Riyadh, Jeddah , and Dammam, students choose when and where they prefer to attend the forum which is four days long. The aim of the forum is to provide the candidate with the knowledge, legal, academic, and cultural experiences that they need. The forum dealt with the procedure of scholarship, general overview of how to deal with the international law and regulations, the safety of the students and psychological and social preparation. Each lecture is presented by a specific doctor who is an expert and have a great experience to share with the students. For instance, laws and regulations in the countries of scholarship. Also, the discussion of the most challenges faced by male and female students in the in their educational and social situation was presented by Dr. Fawzi Bukhari, the Cultural Attaché in Canada, and Dr. Mohammed Al-Luhaidan, the Assistant Cultural Attaché in Britain. In addition, they provide some advice to the students in how to overcome some of the difficulties that they may face. At the end of the forum, there is a time for open discussion that allows the students to ask questions and express their concern (Sabq, 2017). Methodology Creating and implementing an emergency preparedness program that involved the target population. Scholarship students from Saudi Arabia were the targeted population for this project. Many students are unaware of disaster and the importance of emergency preparedness plan. This project aims to educate students about a disaster and how to be prepared. After identifying the target population, the project gathered information related to the students and their background about a disaster. The information will include the scholarship country. it is important to know the country because each country and area may face different types of disaster. For example, in United State, some state may face winter storm while other face wildfire situation. All parties of the project have a role to play to ensure that we have an effective result. For the Ministry of Higher Education, they are required to fund educational projects and annual meeting for Disaster Risk Reduction and ensuring that the students have the needed Knowledge. Saudi Arabian Cultural Mission, cooperate with the Ministry of Higher Education to provide the number of students in each country and discuss the hazardous in each country. Students should determine how they prefer to communicate because the plan will require a high level of effective communication will all parties. The project will be presented to the students as a presentation in the forum that they attend before they leave the country. The project will differ from other projects because it will be specific about a disaster that students might face in different countries. The project will define specific actions that students need to take to prepare for disaster. References Al-Bassam, A. M., Zaidi, F. K., & Hussein, M. T. (2013). Natural hazards in Saudi Arabia. Extreme Natural Hazards, Disaster Risks and Societal Implications,243-251. doi:10.1017/cbo9781139523905.024 Altizer, M. A., Lynn, M. K., & Murray, M. L. (2018). Emergency preparedness: What do new college students need to know and how do you inform them? Journal of Emergency Management,16(4), 267. doi:10.5055/jem.2018.0375 Bradley, A. T. (2011). Disaster preparedness handbook: A guide for families. New York: Skyhorse Pub. Chen, L., Liu, Y., & Chan, K. (2006). Integrated Community-Based Disaster Management Program in Taiwan: A Case Study of Shang-An Village. Natural Hazards,37(1-2), 209223. doi:10.1007/s11069-005-4669-5 Christian. (2018, September 11). Vulnerability and Capacities of International Students in the Face of Disasters in Auckland, New Zealand: A Qualitative Descriptive Study. Retrieved from Department of Homeland Security. (2018, September 21). Plan and Prepare for Disasters. Retrieved from Federal Emergency Management Agency. (2004). FEMA Awards $3.2 Million To Colleges, Universities to Become Disaster Resistant. Retrieved from FEMA. (n.d.). Building a Disaster-Resistant University. Retrieved from Gravetter, F. J., & Forzano, L. B. (2005). Psychology: Research methods. South Melbourne, Vic.: Thomson. He, F., & Zhuang, J. (2016). Balancing pre-disaster preparedness and post-disaster relief.European Journal of Operational Research, 252(1), 246-256. doi:10.1016/j.ejor.2015.12.048 International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent societies. (2000, June). Disaster Preparedness Training Programme - Retrieved from Kunz, N., Reiner, G., & Gold, S. (2014). Investing in disaster management capabilities versus pre-positioning inventory: A new approach to disaster preparedness. International Journal of Production Economics,157, 261-272. doi:10.1016/j.ijpe.2013.11.002 Learn about the number of Saudis and their dependents in all countries of the world. (2017, September 24). Retrieved from Ligon, K. (2015). Disaster Preparedness Plan for the Study Abroad Student ... Retrieved from Ministry of Education Database. (2017). Retrieved from TS/EDUCATIONSTATISTICSCENTER/EDUCATIONDETAILEDREPORTS/Pages/de fault.aspx Newport, J. K., & Jawahar, G. G. (2003). Community participation and public awareness in disaster mitigation. Disaster Prevention and Management: An International Journal,12(1), 33-36. doi:10.1108/09653560310463838 Ritchie, H., & Roser, M. (2018). Natural Catastrophes. Retrieved from Sabq. (2017, October). Launch of the Second Scholarships Forum in Dammam. Retrieved from Taylor, S. J., Bogdan, R., & DeVault, M. L. (2016). Introduction to qualitative research methods a guidebook and resource. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. The Federal Emergency Management Agency. (n.d.). Livestock in Disasters. Retrieved from Veenema, T. G. (2007). Disaster nursing and emergency preparedness: For chemical, biological, and radiological terrorism and other hazards. New York: Springer Pub. What is a disaster? (n.d.). Retrieved from
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