Support group helps kids, young adults grieve, share feelings
Good Grief of Northwest Ohio, Inc., is offering free, peer support groups for children, teens and young adults who have experienced the death of someone significant in their lives.
“One in seven children will lose a parent or sibling before the age of 20. In Northwest Ohio, that’s potentially 15,000 grieving children and teens,” said Elizabeth Tore, executive director of Good Grief of Northwest Ohio. “In a society that is anxious about death, kids often get the message that people are uncomfortable with their grief. As a result, they may suffer in silence, with few opportunities to share their feelings.
Unresolved childhood grief is linked with depression, violence, truancy, school failure, substance abuse, even suicide, Tore said.
“Current research and practice teaches us when children have the opportunity to grieve openly and to share their feelings honestly, they feel less alone, and in turn fare better than they would otherwise,” she said.
Good Grief’s mission is to help families after a death, offering a safe place to gather, grieve, receive and share support. Peer support groups are age appropriate, and led by trained volunteer facilitators who encourage children, teens, and young adults ages 4 to 24 to express their thoughts and feelings through music, play, art, journal writing, and other activities.
Support groups are offered for parents/caregivers while kids’ groups are in session, giving them an opportunity to share, and to learn ways to help their children, as well as themselves. Parents are not required to attend adult sessions, but must remain onsite.
“We recognize the work of mourning in childhood needs to be addressed repeatedly at different developmental and chronological milestones,” Tore said. “Because grieving is a process that continues over time, children will revisit the loss repeatedly, especially during significant life events. Therefore, families can attend sessions for as long as they feel necessary.”
Meetings are the first and third Tuesday of the month from 6:30-8 p.m. at Church of the Cross, United Methodist, 1806 Cass Rd., Toledo.
Buddy Walk 2013
October is National Down Syndrome Awareness Month and the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Toledo (DSAGT) is celebrating with the annual Buddy Walk, a one-mile walk in recognition of the many achievements and abilities of people with Down syndrome.
The walk will be held Sunday, Oct. 13 at The Shops at Fallen Timbers in Maumee. The festivities including music and other entertainment will begin at noon and the walk will step off at 2 p.m. Participants will have opportunities to win cash and other prizes in a raffle and through team awards, such as highest fundraising team, new team with five or more members and more.
For more information, visit www.facebook.com/ToledoBuddyWalk.
The National Buddy Walk® Program has been running annually since 1995, with chapters across the country celebrating National Down Syndrome Awareness Month every October. The goals of the program are to promote acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome and to positively influence local and national policy and practice. Participation in the one-mile Buddy Walk is open to anyone regardless of ability or training.
Down syndrome is the most commonly occurring chromosomal condition; one in every 691 babies in the United States is born with Down syndrome. Quality educational programs, a stimulating home environment, good health care and positive support from family, friends and the community enable people with Down syndrome to develop to their full potential and lead fulfilling lives, attending school and work and contributing to society.
Crab Fest fundraiser
Wood County Special Olympics’ 16th Annual Crab Fest will be held Saturday, Nov. 2 from 6-9 p.m. at Graystone Banquet Hall, 29101 Hufford Rd., Perrysburg.
The dinner will includes the choice of all-you-can-eat prime rib or crab legs, appetizers, salad bar, potato, vegetable, roll and beverage. In addition, attendees can bid on nearly 200 items donated for the event’s silent auction.
Benefit planned for Genoa native
A benefit will be held Sunday, Nov. 17 for Genoa native Jonathan Everett, who has been diagnosed with Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia.
Everett was diagnosed Aug. 28, 2013 – his 30th birthday. He was in the Cleveland Clinic for four weeks, where he underwent high-dose chemotherapy and multiple blood transfusions. Currently, he is home and is about to start 12 weeks of outpatient chemotherapy, which will be followed by oral chemotherapy for a year.
Everett and his wife Lindsay have been married for seven years. They have a daughter, Lacey, who is currently in kindergarten.
Everett has been the general manager of the Maumee Red Lobster since October 2011, and has worked for Darden Restaurants since 2008.
The benefit will be held from 1-7 p.m. at the Sylvania Moose Lodge, 6072 N. Main St., Sylvania. Food will be provided by Darden Restaurants. The event will also include a bake sale, silent auction and 50/50 raffle. All funds raised will help the family with medical costs.
Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for kids. Advance tickets are available by calling Dawn at 419-865-5925 or Lindsay at 419-344-9971. Tickets will also be available at the door.
Carnival for the Cure
A Carnival for a Cure will be held Saturday, Oct. 26 from 5-7 p.m. at RC Waters Elementary School, 220 E. Water St., Oak Harbor.
The carnival, hosted by Team Benton Carroll Salem Schools, will include games, food, a silent auction, clowns, balloon art and face painting.
Tickets will be $10 for 40 tickets; a free ticket will be awarded to those who come in costume. For more information, call Sharon Knoop at 419-707-1948.
Relay for Life kickoff
Relay For Life of Ottawa County will hold a Kick Off Celebration Tuesday, Nov. 12 from 6-8 p.m. at Our Guest Inn, 220 E. Perry St., Port Clinton.
Members of the community are invited to attend and learn more about Relay For Life and how to make a difference in the fight against cancer.
Spina Bifida Association of Northwest Ohio is sponsoring the Walk-N-Roll for SBT Saturday, Oct. 19 at the Inclusive Playground at Hollstein Reservation in Amherst, Ohio.
The event celebrates the achievements of those living with Spina Bifida and helps raise awareness about the importance of folic acid in preventing birth defects.
Spina Bifida, an incomplete closure of the spinal column that occurs in the first month of pregnancy, is the most frequently occurring, permanently disabling birth defect in the United States. By consuming 400 mcg (0.4 mg) of folic acid in a supplement or multivitamin prior to pregnancy, women may reduce the likelihood of their child being born with serious birth defects like Spina Bifida by as much as 70 percent.
Folic acid also plays a role in the growth of healthy cells, may contribute to a healthy heart and may help prevent certain types of cancer.
The Spina Bifida Association of Northwest Ohio’s mission is to promote the prevention of Spina Bifida and to enhance the lives of all affected. Funds raised by the chapter are used for programs to benefit children and adults in Northern Ohio and include:
* Educational grants to families to attend the National Spina Bifida Conference
* Aid in purchasing medical equipment and supplies
* Information for parents about their child’s development and growth
* Newborn packets to hospitals
* A lending closet of equipment and supplies
* Subscriptions to Insights magazine, a publication about research, therapies, treatments, and living strategies for people with Spina Bifida
“We’ve been reaching out to families in northeast Ohio since there isn’t a Spina Bifida group in the area. It’s important that families are connected to one another for mutual support,” said Christina Fulton, chair of the SBANWO. “We also want to be sure that all women of childbearing age receive the important message that folic acid plays in a healthy pregnancy.”
Blood donors needed
The American Red Cross reminds area residents that blood donors are needed all year round to ensure the blood supply stays strong. According to statistics, approximately every two seconds, a patient in the United States needs blood.
All donors during the month of October will be eligible to win a $200 gift card, courtesy of Suburban Propane. Walk-ins are always welcome, but donors are encouraged to schedule an appointment in advance by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or by visiting redcrossblood.org.