In 2023, Supporting Kidds served 403 children ages 5-18 through 64 grief groups at our Center and in schools in Delaware! Included in that number, we also supported 62 children and teens through individual counseling, totaling 683 sessions.
In Delaware 1 in 10 or 19,600 children experience the death of a parent or sibling by age 18. By age 25, that number more than doubles to 46,000. Delaware ranks #12 in the country and is higher than the national average when it comes to families experiencing childhood bereavement.
Our main goal is to help children and teens understand the normal grief process and provide a safe space to develop positive coping skills and a sense of community. Children are given opportunities to support each other on their grief journey, encouraged to build social supports and a greater sense of purpose & self-empowerment.
Grief is not an illness to be treated; it is a human process to be experienced.
Supporting Kidds follows a prevention-based model. We help facilitate the grief process, thereby inoculating children and families against developing problems from unexpressed or invalidated grief reactions. We provide children with a safe environment, validation of their losses, and the necessary tools so that they can grow through the process and cope effectively with loss.
We do this by intervening to reduce the current suffering of grieving children, preventing the development of behavioral and emotional problems that are associated with unresolved grief and we empower the community to support them in the grieving process. Children often lack the emotional resources, cognitive ability, decision-making power, role models, vocabulary, permission, and life experience to deal effectively with significant loss. Obstacles to grief can set the stage for increased problems later in life, such as depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, difficult relationships, and a victim-orientation to living. We operate to be directly responsive to the needs of the community with our ongoing groups, individual counseling, and Survival Kits that provide information to enable families and schools to help grieving children immediately.