Children’s Grief Support Camps Offer Hope and Healing

The beauty of nature provides the healing backdrop for two unique summer camps for children who have experienced the death of a loved one. Both are led by trained grief support specialists from Western Reserve Grief Services.

Riding Through Grief, a day camp offered June 22-26, 9 a.m. to 12 noon, in collaboration with Fieldstone Farm Therapeutic Riding  Center, 16497 Snyder Road, Chagrin Falls, is for children ages 8-12. Through riding and working with horses on a 45-acre farm, children explore their feelings in a supported environment. The gentle, nurturing feedback of therapy horses in a tranquil environment has a healing effect. Registration for Riding Through Grief is due by May 31. The camp fills up quickly, so early registration is recommended.

Together We Can takes place August 4-6, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at scenic Red Oak Camp, 9057 Kirtland-Chardon Road, Willoughby. Designed for ages 6-13, the camp encourages self-expression through art, music and sharing with other kids who have also experienced the death of someone they love. The environment creates a “safe zone” where kids can feel comfortable sharing emotions and asking questions.

“The children engage in activities to express feelings, support coping skills, and honor their special person,” said Karen Hatfield, Team Leader. “We have done drum circles, yoga and karate activities through the years that the kids and counselors enjoy. They also have time to enjoy the gorgeous outdoor setting and have fun with other children. There is swimming, rock climbing, archery and kayaking in the afternoon. There is comfort in being with other kids. They learn they are not alone, they are not going crazy and other children their age are coping with some of the same kinds of feelings.” Registration for Together We Can at Red Oak is due by July 8.

The children’s grief support camps are one of many community grief support services offered by Hospice of the Western Reserve made possible through charitable gifts from the community. To request a registration packet for one of the camps, call 216.486.6838. More information is available at

Laurie Henrichsen

Public and Media Relations Manager

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Volume 12, Issue 3, Posted 5:26 PM, 03.09.2020