One in 12 children in Montana will experience the death of a loved one before their 18th birthday. In recognition of the importance of understanding the impact of childhood grief, this year, Missoula Mayor John Engen and Montana Governor Steve Bullock recognized Nov. 21, 2019 as Children’s Grief Awareness Day for the City of Missoula and the State of Montana. Publicly acknowledging the day is a powerful way to raise awareness of children’s grief and the resources available to those experiencing loss.
Children’s Grief Awareness Day is recognized by grief centers, care providers, and committed communities across the country. Recognizing this day builds a foundation of support for grieving children by strengthening a national community of bereaved individuals, support service organizations, and community members.
After experiencing significant loss, many young people report feeling alienated and believing that their grief is invisible to those around them. Grief advocates help ensure that bereaved children feel seen and understood, supporting them as they navigate a world without their person.
Appropriate and accessible support creates spaces for young people to hold big emotions and can help mitigate against the possible negative effects of grief and trauma, such as high-risk behaviors and negative coping mechanisms. Bringing awareness to childhood bereavement is a significant step towards ensuring that young people receive the care and treatment they deserve to express their grief in healthy and positive ways.
Tamarack Grief Resource Center (TGRC) is proud to provide grief support and education to individuals, families, and communities throughout Montana. As a community, we can shine a light on children’s grief and offer comfort and hope. With offices in Missoula, Kalispell, and Browning, TGRC provides counseling, grief support groups, bereavement camps, community workshops and events, and educational opportunities to the western Montana community and across the country. For more information about TGRC and our services, please contact us at: 406-541-8472.