Forum helps adults support grieving kids

Children's grief expert Andrea Warnick will hold a free online forum for parents and caregivers

It can be very difficult to know what to say to a child about death or terminal illness. To help caregivers, children’s grief expert Andrea Warnick and the Canadian Virtual Hospice have teamed up to offer a free online forum that will provide answers to difficult questions.

KidsGrieve2 Q&A, to be held Sept.13 at 1 p.m. (Eastern time), was inspired by organizations in the United Kingdom that started free children’s grief support help lines for caregivers.

“For years I’ve wanted to find a way to bring a similar type of resource to Canada,” Warnick says. “It’s such a simple, yet brilliant idea and because it’s available to parents as well as professionals, such as educators, health care providers, those working in child protection and the funeral services industry. This goes a long way in terms of building community to support children who are grieving.”

KidsGrieve2 Q&A connects families, professionals and volunteers across Canada with expert advice on supporting children and youth who are grieving or dealing with an impending death. Warnick explains that the forum is important because it allows parents to share stories and get expert guidance.

“Many families as well as professionals and volunteers live in communities that lack access to formal grief support for kids,” she says. “Our goal is to create a very accessible forum for Canadians to bring their questions and concerns regarding supporting children and youth who have experienced a death or who are anticipating a death in their life.”

For more information, visit KidsGrieve2 Q&A or email KidsGrieve2@virtualhospice.ca for access to the forum.