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Children's Grief Awareness Month

November marks Children's Grief Awareness Month, when we acknowledge the grief felt by children in many circumstances- not just the death of a loved one. Grief can be caused by trauma, transitions, and loss, but no matter the cause, each individual feels and processes it differently. ACLP recognizes the role child life professionals play in supporting grieving children and families; thank you for being present and sensitive to their needs and experiences. Below, you'll find resources to assist you in child life practice with grieving children.

Featured Webinar: Creating a Sharing Place: Grief Support In and Out of the Hospital

Child life specialists use their knowledge of human development, medical understanding, skills in validation, and creativity to assist in increasing the child’s understanding of death and providing memory making opportunities in the hospital setting. These skills can also be applied in grief groups outside of the hospital with children who have a need for longer processing of the grief. By creating opportunities to work with children and families on grief, child life specialists further develop their skills in working with patients and families experiencing loss and cultivate new opportunities to utilize their child life training and skill set. During this webinar, attendees will learn more about grief groups from the perspective of child life specialists who work both within and outside the hospital. Attendees will gain knowledge about how to create and sustain grief groups and the benefits they can offer to children and families. 

1.5 PDUs; Intervention

Register now. 

Articles and Resource Sheets

Supporting a Grieving Infant
Supporting Grieving School-Aged Children
Supporting Grieving Teens

Recommended Children’s Books: Grief and Bereavement
Shani Thornton, M.S., CCLS, @childlifemommy

Grow, Release, Identify, Empower, and Fulfill (G.R.I.E.F.) Program: An Educational Program about Grief and Loss
ACLP Bulletin | Winter 2021 | VOL. 39 NO. 1
Michelle Cumber, MA, CCLS, CEIM

ACLP Webinars

The Building Blocks of Competence: Exploring Grief Work and School Collaboration- Grief, competency, and school collaboration are all common themes in child life; however, the connection between these areas is often underexplored. Shedding light on the significance of the relationship between these topics, this webinar will provide insight into grief work as it relates to child life practice and school partnerships. 

Playing with Grief: Perspectives from Two Child Life Specialists in Palliative Care- This webinar will explore grief through different professional lenses, introduce participants to novel grief assessment techniques, and discuss how the information obtained in assessment may be practically translated into meaningful interventions. This discussion will review how grief is a dynamic process in which the individual’s grief informs and shapes play-based interventions.

Good Grief: Understanding and Coping Strategies for Children Living with Loss- This webinar will examine many types and facets of grief in children and adolescents, and discuss coping skills and creative activities that help children explore and work through their grief. Support for the child life specialist working with grieving children will also be explored.

Child Life Profession