Thursday, 25 January 2018

Peace Hospice Care announces the launch of a free children's bereavement workshop, called Mindcraft, to support children in the local area, aged five to sixteen, who have lost a loved one.

The sessions are being held throughout March, at the Hospice in Watford, on consecutive Saturdays for four weeks.

Every year, approximately 370 parents die in Hertfordshire, leaving some 650 dependent children. More children are affected by the death of another family member, teacher, friend or pet. Fear, anxiety, struggling with self esteem, feeling isolated and lack of confidence are just some of the feelings children might experience after losing a loved one.

The Hospice's Mindcraft programme will provide age-specific creative art group work so children can access peer support which is an important way of helping them manage their bereavement.

Debbie Clare, Emotional Wellbeing Co-ordinator at Peace Hospice Care, said: "Art is a comfortable avenue through which children can express emotions that may otherwise be challenging to convey through words. By engaging in the workshops, bereaved children will be able to bring difficult and suppressed emotions to the surface, increase awareness of themselves and their environment, as well as relieve stress, sadness and anxiety. The art activities will also offer an opportunity to develop coping skills, connect with others and inspire hope for the future in a safe and colourful way."

Alongside the workshops there will be a 'Parent/Carer's Perspective' group where the child's significant adult will have the opportunity to learn about the sessions and what they can do at home to best support their child/young person.

Three months after the sessions have ended there will be a follow-up session where the children, young people and parents/carers can share their experiences following the programme.

For more information email: starlightcentre@peacehospicare.org.ukor call: 01923 330 332