Recovery in Nicaragua and the USA

March 1983 (VOL. 1, NO. 1)

Download this article

Family recovery from natural disasters is examined in a cross-cultural framework. A longitudinal design was used, gathering survey data from respondents in Rapid City, South Dakota, U.S.A., (N=125), and Managua, Nicaragua (N=275) where extensive disasters occurred in 1972. A model of family recovery is developed and its fit with the data is tested using path analysis. In Rapid City, perception of recovery is best explained by losses, aid received, and recovery of predisaster income levels. In Managua aid--at least that type reported by Nicaraguan respondents--had little effect; employment continuity took precedence over other variables. The data suggest that in order to recover predisaster levels of satisfaction with life style families reach beyond their immediate boundaries for help, but the institutionalized manner in which this is done differs across cultures.