Summerfest benefits healing center |

Summerfest benefits healing center

Douglas Center for Hope and Healing has provided grief support in the Carson Valley and surrounding communities since 2011. Pictured: Amanda Johnson, Jodi Wass and Mickey Garcia.
Sarah Drinkwine |

Those left grieving after a loss make their way in the world often bearing feelings of sadness, loneliness, anger, guilt, resentment and fear, but they don’t have to face those feelings alone.

Douglas Center for Hope and Healing has provided grief support to more than 150 children, teens and families in the Carson Valley and surrounding communities since 2011.

A 501(c)3 nonprofit, the center relies heavily on volunteers, donations, sponsors and fundraisers such as the second annual Summerfest, set for Aug. 18 at Minden Park.

“Something we pride ourselves in is we don’t charge for our services,” said center co-founder and executive director Jodi Wass. “We understand the burden of loss and want people to receive the help they need without adding on to their stress and costs.”

Last year the center partnered with the Carson Valley Active 20-30 Club to create and host the Summerfest after the center moved in to its new facility at the Mountainview Professional Building in Gardnerville and needed help with expenses.

“The Summerfest is an opportunity for the community to come together and create awareness in the organization while raising funds so the center can continue to provide free counseling to the community,” said Wass.

In conjunction with the Main Street Event Cars Show, visitors can view cars, performances by Trippin King Snakes and Jackota Wass, enjoy bratwurst and beer tasting, a silent auction and more.

Wass said the center provides support groups twice a month for children ages 4-9, “tweens” ages 10-12, teens ages 13-17 and adults. Counselors also will go to a school, business or to someone’s home to provide counseling after a loss.

“We give children and families opportunities for sharing and self-expression in healthy, positive ways,” said Wass.

Wass said the center is looking to branch out into other areas of loss including divorce and deployment.

“There are more than one way to feel loss and we want to help and show support in those areas too.”

Wass said volunteers are always needed at the center. Volunteers go through training to become group facilitators before co-facilitating either a children, teen or adult support group.

“With the help of the community, the Douglas Center for Hope and Healing can continue to provide support for people who have lost a loved one,” said Wass.

The Summerfest is set for 4-8 p.m. Aug. 18 at Minden Park. Cost, $20 pre-sale or $25 at the door.

Douglas Center for Hope and Healing is located at 1528 Highway 395, Gardnerville. For information, call 775-450-0329 or email