Free Online Training for Clinicians and Professionals Working With Grieving Children of All Ages
The Highmark Caring Place is hosting its annual online conference/training on Feb. 28 from 9:00-4:30 pm EST. Free CEUs will be provided and attendees can also access the training later after registering. The theme this year is Grief Interrupted: Creating Space For All Experiences of Loss. We all have experiences of grief and loss, yet some individuals and communities are not afforded the space to grieve in a way that they need or want to. Their grief in many ways is interrupted.
Register for Virtual Teen-Led Grief Support Groups
Registration for the Peer Healing group starting in March 2024 is now open! Peer Healing is a teen-led grief support group for teens 13-18 that meets once a week on Wednesday nights for 8 weeks. Games, conversation, and connection will help teens who have experienced a death loss find a healing space and skills that will help them as they navigate their new normal. Learn more about our Peer Healing groups here.
KCGCF Receives New York Life Foundation and KY Association of Health Plan Grants To Serve Scott County Schools
Scott County Schools announced a new pilot program to tackle one of Kentucky’s most significant but least understood and least addressed public health issues for children and adolescents: bereavement. State data modeling shows that one in nine Kentucky children will lose a parent or sibling by the age of 18, with 25% of parental bereavements caused by overdose. This represents more than 40,000 Kentucky children, enough to fill Rupp Arena nearly twice over. Scott County Schools is now teaming up with Kentucky Center for Grieving Children and Families (KCGCF) for a unique initiative thanks to generous grants from the Kentucky Association of Health Plans (KAHP) and the New York Life Foundation's (NYLF) Grief Reach Program, which will enable students to access school-based grief support services.
KCGCF Partners with UK Athletics for Unique Support Group
The KCGCF is honored to have partnered with UK Athletics and UK Football this fall to run The Perfect Fit Peer Support Group! UK Athlete JJ Weaver saw the need for himself and his fellow players for a safe space to talk about their losses and how they cope. KCGCF Clinical Program Manager Emily Johnson Rommelman led the group weekly, and we are beyond thrilled with how this new resource is developing. CBS Inside Football recently did an incredible feature on the program. Watch the video here!
KCGCF Advocates in Frankfort For More Supports for Grieving Children and Teens
The KCGCF was honored to be able to present testimony to the Kentucky House Interim Joint Committee on Families and Children. KCGCF staff, FCPS staff, and a bereaved teen all presented on the impacts of death loss for children and teens and gave a call to action to build more supports statewide. Watch the testimony here. We were also glad to have WKYT cover the testimony and create their own news piece here.
New NACG Teen Grief Journal Includes Contributions from Lexington Teen
The National Alliance for Children's Grief (NACG) has just released a teen grief journal, a new resource for middle and high school students. The journal, available in English and Spanish editions, includes a variety of suggested writing and art activities, as well as idea prompts. It also includes material from a NACG-supported teen work group, which met regularly to contribute ideas, feedback, and quotes that appear in the finished book.
Katarina Salisbury, one of the members of the NACG working group and one of two Teen Leaders for the KCGCF's online teen grief support group, contributed material to the book. Katarina is a student at a local Lexington high school and volunteers regularly with several KCGCF programs. "This is an interactive journal that has something for everyone," Katarina says. "It's a really good resource for encouraging teens to begin acknowledging and engaging with their grief."
The journal is available directly from the NACG; for more information and to order, click here.
New Partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bluegrass!
The KCGCF is delighted to announce a new partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bluegrass (BBBS). Through this new "Growing Connections" Program, the KCGCF will provide activities and events for BBBS families with death loss to create fun and supportive experiences for them. We are very proud to partner with this trusted agency and look forward to meeting new families and seeing these important services develop.