Grieving Children & Teens
About the Program
A Program for Grieving Children and Teens is a support system for children and teenagers ages 3 to 18 who have experienced the death of a parent, sibling, relative or friend. The program works together with children, parents, relatives and the professional care-giving community.
Currently there are three 10-week sessions per year, in the Spring, Fall, and Winter. Please contact us at (207) 777-7740 for the latest schedule. Interviews are required of all participants prior to the start of the session.
Through these weekly group meetings, the program provides a trusting environment where feelings about the loss of a loved one may be expressed and shared with others in similar circumstances. Activities such as drawing, writing, art, music and discussion will help children communicate their feelings.
Children are divided into appropriate age groups that are staffed by volunteer facilitators. Volunteers have completed a 27-hour training program designed and taught by both professional and lay people with extensive experience in bereavement issues. On-going professional supervision is provided for volunteers.
Expected outcomes for children who participate in the program include:
- an opportunity to express themselves
- an ability to share feelings of grief as a family
- an opportunity to learn new coping skills
- a chance to participate in age-related peer support.
What participants are saying:
- "I didn't know how to talk about it at first, but once I did, it started to get a little easier."
- "I felt like my words were safe to stay there, not to be said anywhere else."
- "I learned that it's really important not to tuck all this stuff away, because at some point something will trigger it and it will come out and hit you."
- "The anger and sadness has stopped building up. It's going downwards now."