Quake refugees surveyed
Personal accounts from the Christchurch earthquakes have touched Gail Adams in more ways than one and she is focusing her PhD studies on them. Studying at Waikato University, Ms Adams is doing a PhD on emotional geography and is looking into the reasons why people have chosen to relocate to the Matamata-Piako District from Christchurch.
As part of her research she wants to talk to people and hear their personal accounts of the earthquakes.
‘‘I am interested in talking to people about why they have chosen to relocate to this area and about their experiences,’’ she said.
‘‘If there are people that are willing, I would send questions out first, follow ethical guidelines and people can withdraw at any time if they want to.’’
Ms Adams said it fascinated her that through strong emotions and grief, a person’s ideas about a certain place could be changed forever and that one neighbourhood would stay and one would go – as it has happened in Christchurch.
‘‘This study is hugely valuable to see how people are going to recover from it and that is what I am working towards.’’
She flew to Christchurch last month to experience the reality of life there to help her understand what she is studying.
‘‘I thought nearly a year on from September that a lot of things would have been cleaned up by now but it’s not. Nothing in the media prepares you for what you see there. It was a sobering experience to say the least.’’
She began her PhD in April this year after completing a Masters in grief in geography and a double major in geography and anthropology. She developed a proposal for her PhD after the September earthquake but since the February one, has re-angled it to focus on relocation. ‘‘ Often the research is focused on the people in Christchurch but nothing has been said about people who have moved and what their experiences are so I am hoping to find out.’’
To contact Ms Adams call her on 021 264 5172 or email gaila@ waikato.ac.nz.
Gail Adams wants to talk to people who have relocated to the Matamata-Piako district from Christchurch since the earthquakes.