Children in Uvalde struggle with trauma following the school shooting

When one girl notices slender individuals with long hair resembling the shooter who barged into her Uvalde school and slaughtered 21 people, she flees and hides. One boy stopped playing with animals and made friends. When she thinks of the May 24 massacre that claimed the life of a close friend, a third youngster experiences heart palpitations that have caused her to need to be brought to the hospital and remain there for several weeks.

A diagnosis of anxiety, sadness, and post-traumatic stress disorder has been made for the 11-year-old child. To safeguard her identity, she and her family spoke to The Associated Press under the condition that their names not be used.

“I never lost someone before,” she added, adding that her friend, who was one of the 19 pupils and two instructors slain in the bloodiest school shooting in the history of the United States in the past ten years, would support her during trying times. She had a lot of inner strength.

PTSD symptoms are beginning to surface as pupils prepare to go back to school in Uvalde on Tuesday for the first time since the Robb Elementary shooting. Experts are concerned because communities of colour, like the primarily Hispanic city of Uvalde, experience inequities in access to mental health care, and parents are finding themselves unable to assist. Since access to scarce resources necessitates lengthy waits for referrals through medical assistance programmes like Medicaid, it can be much more difficult for low-income families.

Texas lawmakers have prioritised funding mental health care in recent years, allocating more than $2.5 billion in the current fiscal year.

Officials must visit the neighbourhood to ensure the appropriate resources are accessible, according to Martha Rodriguez, who oversaw efforts to aid students in recovering following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Addressing stigmas and sending caregivers who comprehend the families’ values and language, according to her, are crucial.

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