Center offers grief support groups | RecordCourier.com

Center offers grief support groups

Staff Reports

The Douglas Center for Hope & Healing is offering free grief support groups for children and adults from ages 4 and up beginning Dec. 1.

A mandatory orientation session is 5:30 p.m. Wednesday for anyone interested in attending the first session.

Children, teens and adults will meet separately at the center’s office, 1528 Highway 395, Suite 250, in the Mountain View Professional Center in Gardnerville.

Children ages 4-12 meet in Suite 130 at Urban Jungle.

The support groups meet 6-7 p.m.

“We’re offering a safe place to go to be able to grieve and go through the whole process in a healthy manner,” said Melissa Oxley, a board member.

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Oxley experienced devastating loss nearly four years ago when her husband, Benjamin Oxley, was shot to death as they were sleeping in their Wildhorse home.

“I obviously went through a huge loss,” she said. “I’m still going through it. It’s difficult being a single parent and trying to take a child through the grieving process. This program is very close to my heart and a very positive thing.”

School counselor and therapist Jodi Wass has been working for several years with community members to create the program.

She said the center would give children and their families opportunities for sharing and self-expression in healthy ways to override feelings of loss, anger, guilt and depression that could surface months and years after a death.

It’s modeled after the Solace Tree in Reno, whose founder, Emilio Parga, is on the board of directors.

The support groups will meet 6-7 p.m. the fourth Thursday of every month, with the exception of the first session that is Dec. 1.

If the fourth Thursday falls on a state or national holiday, the group will be the following Thursday.

For Oxley, volunteering with the group is a way for her to give back.

“I just feel good about it, and helping others the way people helped me get through the same thing,” she said. “If just feels good to volunteer.”

Peer support groups are open-ended; participants may join in at any time.

For children and teens, groups are open to those who have lost a parent, caregiver, sibling, friend grandparent or relative.

For adults, parents and caregivers, groups are open to those who have lost a loved one.

DETAILS

To register for a Douglas Center for Hope and Healing orientation and support group, contact the center at (775) 450-0329; Jodi Wass, (775) 450-2826, or Emilio Parga, (886) 250-0601.

Children, teens and adults will meet separately at the center’s office, 1528 Highway 395, Suite 250, in the Mountain View Professional Center in Gardnerville.

Children ages 4-12 meet in Suite 130 at Urban Jungle.

Mandatory orientation is 5:30 p.m. Wednesday in Suite 250. The first support group meeting is Dec. 1, 6-7 p.m.

ON THE WEB

Douglas Center for Hope and Healing

http://www.douglascenterforhopeandhealing.org