FLINT — One in 20 children younger than 18 will have experienced the death of a parent. Many others will grieve the death of a sibling or another important person in their lives.
Ele’s Place recognizes that grief is unique, and that unaddressed grief in children and teens can have a negative impact on overall health and wellbeing. That’s why Ele’s Place is observing Children’s Grief Awareness Month alongside the National Alliance for Grieving Children through November, and in particular, the affiliated Children’s Grief Awareness Day on Thursday, Nov. 16. The local nonprofit offers ways for the community to raise awareness of and spread hope to grieving children and families.
“Many bereaved children feel isolated, unaware that they are not alone,” said Amy Krug, managing director of Ele’s Place Flint. “Children’s Grief Awareness Month is an opportunity to tell children they are not forgotten, and there is support, hope and healing to be found.
“We’re excited to join our community in bringing attention to the necessity of support in the overarching struggle many children face after the death of a loved one.”
Unresolved childhood loss is often linked with adolescent and adult depression, poor school performance, violence, truancy, alcoholism, drug abuse and suicidal tendencies; Ele’s Place helps grieving children at risk of developing these negative behaviors by supporting them during their bereavement, so they may continue their lives with hope and confidence.
Ele’s Place has served families across Michigan for 26 years. For information on resources, visit elesplace.org. – L.R.