Youth Grief Support Program
Brighter Days Family Grief Center proudly acquired Fairview Health’s Youth Grief Services program in December 2020. This 20+ year proven program served hundreds of youth annually through a quarterly grief series and two bereavement camps, Camp Erin-Twin Cities. We intend to continue with these incredible supports while enhancing this program to include monthly virtual and in-person grief support groups, access to free grief counseling, and family-friendly events and activities that provide connection to others who have experienced a similar loss. We view this connection as one of the most important emotional aspects of our model of care; knowing that there are others who understand can help diminish the level of isolation a grieving child may typically feel. Learn more about our special program in the video below:
Youth and Family Grief Support Series
Brighter Days provides a free 6-week grief support series for children and teens, ages 4-17, who have experienced the death of a loved one. This series is an evidence-based and trauma-informed program led by our Youth Program Director with assistance from our Youth Grief Counselor and our professionally trained volunteers. Each series starts with a beautiful welcoming ceremony for the family and ends with a meaningful closing ceremony, both providing the opportunity for connection to each other while also honoring their loved one. Activities are hands-on and age appropriate, and each week focuses on a specific topic. While the children are meeting, the adults are invited to attend an educational class about how to best support their grieving child or a support group specific to their loss.
Monthly Support Groups and Individual Counseling
Brighter Days hosts free in-person and virtual monthly support groups for support needed above and beyond our youth series. These groups are scheduled “as needed” and may be for specific age groups and loss types, such as suicide, addiction and illness. We also intend to provide anticipatory loss groups for children who are anticipating the death of a parent, sibling or close family member. All groups will be led by our Youth Grief Counselor with assistance from our interns and volunteers. Groups will be held in-person and virtually to better serve families who are located outside of the Twin Cities. To learn more about these groups or to discuss individual counseling for your child/teen, please contact Melisa Gesick at email@example.com
Camp Erin – Twin Cities
Brighter Days is proud to be a partner of the Eluna Network, and will offer Camp Erin – Twin Cites at least twice per year. Camp is a recognized, therapeutic method that teaches youth in the medium that is most familiar and comfortable to them—play. Camp activities embed the learning in fun, yet instructive, activities. The unique camp experience creates an atmosphere to facilitate safe expression of grief both physically and emotionally, as well as traditional camp activities such as canoeing, swimming, arts and crafts, and games. Campers learn that they are not alone in their grief, which fosters a sense of belonging that is often shattered when a parent or sibling dies. Lasting friendships develop out of the camp experience, creating an extended support community.
Activities and Special Events
Whether it is through our partners or one of our special events, we are committed to providing healthy and positive engagement for the children and families of Brighter Days Family Grief Center. Aside from grief support, camps and retreats, we will continue to provide virtual and in-person activities and events to remind children that they are not alone. Keep an eye out for events like Family FUNday, tickets to sporting events, craft making at our center and holiday themed memorial events. All created with the intention to connect children and families to US and to EACH OTHER!
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Please make sure to visit our Resources page for other local and national resources for Youth.