In a very interesting article the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter (DN), reports something often forgotten by national crisis management centers: the help organizations are often exclusively focusing on issues relating to the grieving process of adults, whilst neglecting the need of the younger population.

The older generation find information though traditional channels; television, radio and newspapers. Kids however, receive a lot of information though the Internet, and they retreat to their regular hangouts even during tough times. And, considering how hard Sweden has been struck by the tsunami disaster – these are definitely tough times.

One place where they go is the Swedish online community Lunarstorm, with an incredible reach of 80% of Swedes between the ages of 18-to-25. (The figure is probably about the same, if not even higher, for kids between the ages of 13-to-17.)

Lunarstorm, realizing the crucial need for help, have involved around 20 priests and other volunteer personnel who are working around the clock to meet young people on their own turf: online.

The issues can be everything from comforting someone who has lost a friend, to more concrete and practical things like starting charities and how to volunteer to help.

Save the Children, Unicef and the Red Cross, have understood that this is an important channel, says Johan Forsberg, Lunarstorm’s information officer. He only wish that the Swedish government, particularly prime minister G?ran Persson and foreign minister Laila Frievalds, would wake up and realize it too. They’re needed here, he says.

When you think about it, this is not a very unexpected development. The Internet has integrated into people’s lives in all other aspects of life, so why would this be different? And, as usual it’s the kids that are forgotten by authorities: they’re busy speaking adultish about adult things with other adults.

I believe that using the Internet for these kinds of things can be very helpful, on a personal level. Sharing thoughts, fears and sorrow with other who feel the same way as yourself can be liberating and helpful. However, to avoid getting stuck in vicious thoughts, it’s also important that there is adults, preferably professionals, present in such discussions.

It seems to me that Lunarstorm are doing a great job, with whatever limited means they can muster. So, G?ran Persson – what are you waiting for? Wake up, smell the coffee and go answer some real questions from your future constituency.