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What to Expect

Parents and caregivers will be invited to meet their family’s counsellor during an intake session. When children and teens first meet with their counsellor, the focuses will be getting to know each other and exploring the space.

Counselling sessions may include art and play therapies, writing or other activities that help explore and express grief.

We Go Where We Are Needed

We ensure our services are accessible to all by attempting to remove logistical challenges during an already challenging time. Our counsellors work with patients and families at our centre, and when appropriate, can also offer support at hospices, hospitals, schools, home, or at other locations in the community.

Accessible to All

Counselling fees are on a sliding scale based on family income and drop-in groups are free of charge.

No one is turned away due to financial difficulties as we work hard with our community partners to ensure there are no obstacles to accessing our services. If your financial circumstances change at any time, please do not hesitate to speak with your counsellor for a fee adjustment.

Risks & Benefits of Grief Counselling

There may be some increase in intensity of feelings as we discuss and work through grief. The intention and benefit of counselling is to enhance our well-being. We all grieve in our own unique way and have different needs as we experience the death of someone close to us.

Individual counselling is focused on the individual’s immediate or near future concerns, such as grief after someone close to them has died. It’s a one-on-one discussion between the counsellor and the client. The two form an alliance, a relationship or bond that enables trust and personal growth. Sessions may include art and play therapies, writing or other activities that help explore and express grief.

Family counselling brings together the members of a family as a group. It focuses on family dynamics and explores issues that affect a family (e.g. disease, death or conflict). By engaging the immediate family unit in grief counselling, those grieving can find great long-term support around them as they establish their resiliency.

 

Children’s Grief Centre 
1245 70 Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2H 2X8
403-263-4525

Family & Community Support Services

Alberta Health Services

The Children’s Grief Centre is wheelchair accessible and free parking is available in front of the building.

Contact Us for More Info

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Additional Information on What to Expect

How Services are Ended

When you and/or your counsellor determine that services are longer required, your file will be closed. The opportunity to re-access services for grief counselling is available.

Peer Connection

Group programs for children, teens, and families can help reduce isolation, foster connection, establish resilience, support mental health, and build community. We offer the following programs for children, teens, and families: Kids ClubCommon Ground, and The Village.

Our Hours

Children’s Grief Centre operates regularly between 9:00am and 5:00pm, Monday to Thursday, and 8:30pm to 4:30pm on Fridays. In order to access 24 hour counselling support, please contact the Distress Centre at 403-266-4357. For any other medical emergency, call 911.

Ways you can Contribute to Improving our Services

As part of your counselling experience, you will be asked to complete surveys in order to assess your needs and the ongoing benefits of counselling. While you have the option to decline completing the surveys, your cooperation is appreciated to help improve the quality of support and services offered by the organization.
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Upcoming Parent Lunch & Learn Series

Sept 29 - How To Talk with Children About Death & Grief (Online via Zoom)

Children grieve differently than adults. They do not have the capacity to deal with intense emotions continuously like adults. Instead, children grieve in doses, alternating between times of play and intense emotions. A child’s age, developmental stage, and experiences determine their understanding of death and ability to cope with the death of a loved one.

Register

Oct 13 - We Grieve Differently…Even in Families (Online via Zoom)

We all grieve in our own unique way and have different needs as we experience the death of someone close to us.

Register

Oct 27 - How To Talk with Children About Advanced Illness (Online via Zoom)

When someone in the family has a life-threatening illness, the whole family is impacted by the many changes, the concerns and the unknown. Adults may choose to avoid talking to children about the illness to protect them from pain and distress. However, when children are not informed, they often feel excluded, alone and isolated. It’s important to consider that children will feel something is going on in their family even when they are not told. They may even think that they have caused the anxiety and unsettled state of their family.

Register

Nov 10 - When Grief is Complicated (Online via Zoom)

Grief is how we respond when we experience loss. Everyone experiences grief and many people associate grief with the death of someone close to them. Grief is also a common reaction when someone in their lives is diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. Grief is complicated.

Register

Nov 24 - Staying Connected to the Person Who Died (Online via Zoom)

When someone dies, it’s natural to worry about losing the memories you have of when they were alive. For this reason, it can be very helpful to find concrete ways to pay them tribute.

Register

Dec 8 - When the Holidays Hurt (Online via Zoom)

The holidays can be a difficult time for those who grieve. Acknowledging this may help us to accept our reactions and tap into ways that make it easier to manage.

Register
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