By: National Alliance for Grieving Children, Partner of the New York Life Foundation
1 in 14 children across the United States will experience a parent or sibling's death before reaching 18.* It is a life-altering change that is experienced by millions annually. While our eyes are on the hospitalization and death rates from COVID-19 and our focus is on our families' care, the uncertainty that pervades these anxious times is the reality lived by our nation's grieving children every day.
The National Alliance for Grieving Children (NAGC) advocates for the often-forgotten grievers. Grieving children deserve a community of support who is not afraid to walk beside them. We believe in the dignity and worth of the individual, including their ability to heal and their right to be understood, heard, and supported during bereavement. We respect their right to self-determination, understanding that each person's grief is unique.
Where there was attachment for a child or teen, there will be grief when a death occurs. Our vision is for No Child to have to Grieve Alone. We believe all bereaved children should have the support and resources they need to adapt to a loss in their lives positively, no matter where they live or their circumstances. There is nothing about grief that must be fixed. There is no solution. There is only safety and comfort in being supported as you undertake your unique journey.
In support and honor of our grieving children and teens, we are launching NAGC GriefTalk. These resource guides on specific topics support conversations with children and teens about death, mourning, and grief. Created by leading bereavement professionals who are also NAGC members for the benefit of all, four free resource guides will launch across the month:
Our GriefTalk resources support the caregiver as they navigate the difficult conversations that can occur around a death. In supporting a healthy dialogue between caregivers and children, we hope to hold space for these conversations across the child's life. Children can continue to grieve the loss as they grow and develop and deserve to have their support team through that.
Let's use our voices to make everyone aware of the need to support bereaved children and teens. Each one deserves to be met with a person ready to walk beside them, equipped to support them as they grieve. Will you commit to investing in your GriefTalk? Join Us!
* Source: https://www.judishouse.org/cbem
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