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Recent studies have found that more than 140,000 children nationwide lost a primary caregiver due to COVID-19 driving a 15% increase in orphaned children. These numbers don’t include children who lost a parent or primary caregiver due to other causes. The need for grief support programs for children has never been greater.
Imagine offers free peer support groups for children ages 3-18 who have experienced the death of a parent, sibling or close family member. Groups are also available for young adults ages 18-30, and for the parents and guardians of the children in the program. Groups for Spanish speaking bereaved adults are also available. Currently, all groups are being held virtually, though we hope to transition some groups to in-person as soon as it feels safe to do so.
Imagine’s support groups are only possible because of our amazing team of volunteers who facilitate the groups. Imagine currently has families waiting to join our support groups. We’re unable to offer them support at this time because we don’t have enough volunteers to begin another Night of Support. We need your help!
Imagine’s volunteer facilitators come from all walks of life and no special background is required other than a willingness to listen, a heart inclined to serve, and the ability to be with children and adults in grief without trying to fix, solve or give advice. No prior experience is necessary. Volunteers must be 18 years or older. Bilingual (Spanish speaking) volunteers are needed as well. Volunteers serve as companions and loving listeners for those who are grieving and help create a space where participants can share tears and embrace the joys of life.
We are hoping to fill our upcoming training with lots of wonderful new volunteers! We’re planning to offer a virtual facilitator training that will meet Friday, Feb 25th from 6-9 pm, Saturday and Sunday Feb. 26-27 from 9-5 each day and Monday, Feb. 28th from 6-9 pm. Participants are required to attend the entire training from Friday to Monday. If you’re interested in participating in the training, please contact Imagine Program Manager, Giovanna Peacock at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have questions regarding the training, you can call us at 908-264-3100. Please help us ensure that no grieving child is required to wait for the support they need.