Children and grief shouldn’t go together…but sometimes they do.
In life, children face the same kind of pain adults do, especially when they lose someone they love. For a child, this kind of trauma turns their safe, dependable world upside down.
To help our children cope with grief, it is vital to provide them with a safe space to express their emotions.
“Peace by Piece has taught us that every storm is part of our journey, and we will come out stronger than ever before.”Regina, Peace by Piece Parent
Fortunately, Hampton Roads has a safe space through a free program: Peace by Piece.
From September through May, Peace by Piece offers caring support groups where children and teens who have experienced the death of a loved one can process their grief with others who understand.
Twice a month for as long as they need, children can play, talk, engage in activities, and interact with other peers who know what they are going through. This peer-to-peer support and interaction helps kids ease their sense of isolation and helps the slow but sure process of healing begin.
How Peace by Piece Works
- Children and teens between the ages of 7 and 18 are eligible to participate.
- Groups are set up by age and parents/caregivers have a separate meeting while their kids meet.
- Groups meet twice a month and are led by trained facilitators.
- Facilitators have undergone screening and successfully completed background checks and extensive grief support training.
- Support groups are overseen by two experienced professionals: the director of Edmarc’s Bereavement Program and a licensed mental health professional from Jewish Family Service.
Become a Peace by Piece Facilitator
Peace by Piece would not be possible without volunteers. If you’re interested in becoming a Peace by Piece Facilitator, contact Megan, our Bereavement Program Director.
Bereavement Program Director
- Must be competent at creating a trusting, caring environment.
- Must be able to listen, share, and establish relationships with children and adults.
- Have high levels of maturity, compassion, and acceptance of others.
- Must be able to maintain confidentiality and a professional manner.
- Must complete Edmarc’s orientation, application process, and undergo criminal history and CPS background checks.
- Must be 18 years or older.
- Must be at least 1 year out from a significant death loss.
- Must be able to complete Peace by Piece Facilitator 3-day training.
- Must be able to commit 2 nights a month from September through May.
“The hardest truth I’ve learned about losing a parent is it is acceptable to show emotions and talk about the person who died. Peace by Piece taught me that normalizing the grieving process is important.”Bryante, Peace by Piece Participant