This year, Thursday November 17th is Children’s Grief Awareness Day. It is purposely set on the third Thursday of November, right before Thanksgiving, to help support children who have lost a loved one, get through the holiday season a little easier. This day also helps remind others that children experience grief, just as adults do. This important day was started in 2008 by Highmark Caring, a Center for Grieving Children, Adolescents, and their Parents. Their mission is to help grieving children feel less alone and more supported during their time of need. As adults, we sometimes struggle to cope with a loss, but for children it can feel almost impossible. That is why spreading awareness is so important.
Books can be a very helpful outlet for children after the loss of a loved one. This site has some great references to books for this topic such as Chester Raccoon and the Acorn Full of Memories and Nana Upstairs & Nana Downstairs, along with Rainbow Reach books which are interactive workbooks to help kids process their feelings during the difficult time of a loss. Here is another informative site about what to expect with grieving children and some very useful tips and book recommendations. Always remember to preview any books about coping with a loss before reading it to a child.
To support those who have lost a love one and help them to honor the memory of someone they have lost, we encourage you to wear BLUE on Thursday, November 17th. The village is also honoring this day by hanging butterflies that have been decorated by children in honor of someone they have lost. HOPE the butterfly is the symbol of Children’s Grief Awareness Day. This helps children who are grieving know that we are here and we care about them. Anyone can decorate a butterfly in memory of, in honor of, or in support of here.
More resources about Children’s Grief Awareness Day: