Hospice of Texarkana will have Good Grief Day, an event to help children deal with loss, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday at Church on the Rock in the cafe, 1601 Mall Drive, Texarkana, Texas. Parents interested in having their child participate in the free program need to RSVP by 5 p.m. Thursday by calling 903-794-4263.
The four-hour program is for youth ages 7 to 15 who've had a loss due to death, divorce or a parent being deployed or incarcerated.
"We offer this once a year because we know that children endure many losses and that's often overlooked," said Stefanie Brazile, director of development and public relations for Hospice of Texarkana. "Kids experience divorce or a parent being away and they don't know what to do with those feelings, so Good Grief Day helps them understand how grief can be anger, sadness or just a general unhappiness. It teaches them how to cope with that."
Hospice of Texarkana grief counselors will be on hand.
"As a nonprofit agency that deals with death and dying all the time, we have this wonderful resources of trained grief counselors. We feel an obligation to share their expertise with kids in our community," she said.
Good Grief Day has been shown to help children who attend.
"We have kids that return from year to year because whatever situation they're going through is ongoing, so that shows their parents really believe it helps them," Brazile said "The parents complete a survey after it's over and mail it back to us. We've always gotten positive feedback. Maybe their child talks a little more or they started journaling. We've heard they just seem more expressive and content."
This is the 19th year Hospice has held Good Grief Day.