The Center for Grieving Children helps children grieving a death to heal and grow through their grief while strengthening families, communities and professionals’ understanding of how best to respond to their needs. In addition, our mission includes serving as a training and resource center for professionals and others who interact with grieving children and teens.
Grief is a natural reaction to the loss of a loved one for children and teens, as well as adults.
Within each individual is the natural capacity to heal oneself.
The duration and intensity of grief are unique for each individual.
Caring and acceptance assist in the healing process.
Our Center-Based programs offer free peer support groups for children and teens ages 5-18 who have experienced the death of someone significant in their lives. Peer support and a caring adult presence help to reduce the feelings of isolation and loneliness that children often experience after death.
The Center has multiple locations around the city of Philadelphia. Creative activities and games allow children to express their thoughts and feelings about death. All groups are divided by age and developmental level to best tailor our support programs. The Center also offers caregiver groups at the same time to provide support for adults raising a grieving child. All Programs for grieving children and families are provided free of charge.
For children and teens who are unable to travel to one of the Family Services sites, we offer free grief groups in schools throughout the city. Usually arranged by school counselors, these groups run for up to 8 weeks, meeting weekly, for 45-60 minutes in schools. Additionally, we offer organizations in the community similar groups.
Presentations and trainings are offered for professionals interested in learning about children and teens who are grieving. We can accommodate requests for onsite presentations, such as for staff in-services. We also offer programs with CEUs.
The Center was founded in 1995 by the Bereavement Program at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children and incorporated as an independent nonprofit in 2000. Our main office is located in East Falls. The Center is supported through individual donations, grants, and corporate sponsorships.