Children’s Grief Awareness day was created in 2008 by the Highmark Carking Place, A Center for Grieving Children, Adolescents and Their Families, and has been recognized throughout the world by many other organizations. The goal is to raise awareness of the impact grief has on the life of a child and provides an opportunity for children to receive the needed support through the grief process. Winnemucca has participated in setting aside the third Thursday of November as Children’s Grief Awareness Day for the past four years. Some facts about children and grief include:
- One in five children will experience the death of someone close to them by age 18.
- In a poll of 1000 high school juniors and seniors, 90% indicated that they had experienced the death of a loved one.
- One in every 1500 secondary school students dies each year.
- One out of every 20 children aged fifteen and younger will suffer the loss of one or both parents. These statistics don’t account for the number of children who lose a “parental figure,” such as a grandparent or other relative that provides care.
- 5 million children are living in a single-parent household because of the death of one parent.
- Mortality rates for adults in their 40’s and 50’s in the past two decades have risen dramatically, making it more likely that younger children will experience the death of a parent, or a classmate’s parent. “Kids are encountering death more often and at a younger age – it’s just inevitable,” says Gerald Koocher, chief of psychology at Boston’s Children Hospital.
This year participants will gather on the Nixon lawn at 5pm for a tree lighting ceremony. Refreshments will be provided. For further information, contact the Fronter Community Action Agency at (775) 623-9003.