Thursday, November 16th, was National Children’s Grief Awareness Day! We were proud to wear blue to show our support and to connect with the community to raise awareness of the unique needs of grieving children and teens.
Leading up to the event, we asked our TCR community to share their thoughts on the importance of grief awareness and support. Their beautiful handwritten reflections were written on blue hearts. Once completed, every two hearts were joined together as a butterfly, symbolizing the integration of grief and awareness and the changes that occur as we support each other with care and understanding. Ultimately, all of the messages we received were gathered and assembled by our incredible interns into one big, beautiful display.
Here in Arlington, TCR program staff and interns hosted activities at Ottoson Middle School and Arlington High School. We also hosted activities at Lexington High School, John Glenn Middle School in Bedford, Jordan Boys & Girls Club in Chelsea, and Blue Hills Boys & Girls Club in Dorchester. At the Yawkey Boys & Girls Club in Roxbury, TCR partnered with the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute to sponsor the activity.
As part of these activities, children and teens were invited to honor their grief by placing a blue dot on a large piece of artwork in order to represent a person in their life who died. They were also invited to share their memories and reflections on blue hearts or strips of ribbon. The response was overwhelming!
On the evening of November 16th, as part of honoring Children’s Grief Awareness Day, TCR Clinical Director Nancy Frumer Styron, PsyD, and TCR Education Director Deborah Rivlin presented a workshop in partnership with DeVito Funeral Homes.
The workshop, entitled “Coping With Loss During the Holidays and Ways To Commemorate: Language, Tools, and Strategies,” helped community members explore ways of commemorating anyone in their lives who has died, including helping children and teens cope with their losses. This interactive workshop provided participants time, space, and guidance to engage in making a meaningful, unique commemoration piece to bring home and use during the upcoming holiday season.
What a meaningful day we had! Thank you to all who participated. You have helped us envision a world where death and dying are more fully integrated into our lives, which leads to greater compassion, hope, and growth.
For more photos from throughout the day, please visit our Facebook Page.