Frequently Asked Questions | Imagine Grief Support

“I am continually inspired by the comfort group members offer to each other.”


Who does Imagine serve?

Imagine provides grief support for NJ children age 3-18 who are coping with loss due to the death of a parent or sibling or children who have a parent or sibling living with a life-altering illness. We also provide grief support for young adults age 18-30 and for adults 30-50. Grief Support Groups for parents and guardians run concurrently with the children’s grief support groups.

Is there a cost to attend Imagine?

Imagine peer support groups are free for all children and families for as long as they need. Because the death of a family member often brings financial instability, Imagine does not charge a fee to families. If you or someone you know is interested please contact our Program Director Mandi Zucker via email or call us at 908-264-3100.

Is this a counseling program? Is it therapy?

Imagine is a peer-support group program, not counseling or therapy. Groups are facilitated by trained adult volunteers and overseen by Imagine clinical staff. Imagine support groups are a wonderful complement for adults, teens or children who also see a therapist.

How many weeks is the program?

Imagine peer support groups run year-round except in July and August. (An activity day and picnic is offered in the summer for all families.). Families can join Imagine at any time and stay as long as needed.

When do the groups meet?

Children meet in small groups no larger than ten per group with other children their same age. Parent groups run concurrently and meet separately from the children and teen support groups.

Do the children meet in the same groups with the parents?

Children meet in small groups no larger than ten per group with other children their same age. Parent groups run concurrently and meet separately from the children and teen support groups.

How does the Tender Living Care program for families coping with illness work?

TLC works just like the bereavement support groups. Children meet in separate groups with other children and parents and caregivers meet in their own group as does the person with the illness. If the person who is ill is unable to attend there is the ability to Skype into the group from home.

What is the volunteer commitment?

Volunteers make a yearlong commitment to volunteering every other week from 5:45 PM – 9:30 PM. Learn more by contacting Imagine Program Director Mandi Zucker via email or call 908-264-3100.

What kind of background do I need to have to be a volunteer?

Volunteers come from all walks of life and need no special background other than a willingness to listen, a heart inclined to serve, and the ability to be with children and adults in pain without trying to fix, solve or give advice.

What if I’ve had a recent loss? May I still volunteer?

We ask that it be at least six months to a year since you have suffered a significant loss of your own before you volunteer. All volunteers will attend an orientation and interview with Imagine clinical staff to determine the best fit and time to volunteer after a loss.

When and how long is the training?

The training is 32 hours held over four days – typically Thursday through Sunday or Friday through Monday from 9 AM – 5 PM. To register please contact Imagine Program Director Mandi Zucker via email. You must be able to participate for all four days. The next Volunteer Facilitator Training is July 8 – July 11, 2016

What if I know a family or child that needs support?

Please share information about Imagine with any family you know who would benefit from participation in Imagine. Imagine does not contact families directly.

Will there be programs to support parents who lost adult children?

Imagine provides child loss support groups for adults who have had a child age 0-25 die. We have an Adult Support Group for adults who have had a spouse, friend, partner or adult child over age 25 die. For additional support contact Compassionate Friends for child loss, and The Center for Life Transition in Chatham who offer support for adults who have had an adult child die, or who are coping with any type of loss due to death.