To Absent Friends – more books/ideas to support C&YP

Photo by Adam Winger on Unsplash

In our final post of the week, we just want to thank you for reading and by doing so marking To Absent Friends Festival with us.

We want to remind you that normalising grief, children & young people come to realise that they are not the only ones. That there isn’t something ‘wrong’ with them for feeling the way they feel. That is why we can’t recommend books and stories enough.

Some other good books read loud are I miss you: a first look at death, or You’ll Find Me – Children’s book about loss and Grieving

The Wilds Poetry Comic is a beautiful resource for older young people.

Child Bereavement UK have some really useful resources and videos, including this one about supporting a bereaved child who is autistic or one about telling a child that someone has died.

To Absent Friends Festival – thoughts about supporting bereaved Children & Young People

Photo by Ben Wicks on Unsplash

As communities around Scotland remember, tell stories, celebrate and reminisce about people they have loved and who have died, it might be that you know of a child or young person who has been bereaved. You might also be wondering how to support them. Some of the information in our Tragic Event Guidance may be helpful. There is a section with advice on how to support children and young people who have been bereaved and who are grieving.

Most bereaved young people with supportive networks such as family, friends and school will manage their grief. Having trusted adults around them can make a big difference to a bereaved young person.

Scotland recognised the importance of supporting those who are grieving when the first Bereavement Charter for Adults and Children was launched last year. This Charter provides a set of statements which describe how in Scotland we can support a person or a group of people experiencing bereavement. The Charter declared Good Bereavement Care is a human right and is underpinned by a desire to make sure that in Scotland, we can do all that we can to support people who might be experiencing difficulties following the death of someone they know or somebody in their community.  

Wall of Remembrance – To Absent Friends

As a follow on from yesterday’s post about memories, the booklist, and read aloud stories available on YouTube we have set up our own little Highland CLB group wall of remembrance.

It is on a Jamboard, and we would love it if you wanted to add a memory or a tribute to someone who has died.

The Jamboard is relatively easy to use, just click on the link and select a ‘sticky note’ from the tool bar. You should then be able to write your message and add it to the board.

To Absent Friends Festival has its own board, which you could also contribute to. Or you might want to set up your own one to encourage others to share memories in a less public forum.

Either way, let’s keep sharing stories, enjoying photographs and remembering!

Memories – To Absent Friends Festival

Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge. Written by Mem Fox Illustrated by Julie Vivas. Video courtesy of Dream Time.

We often talk about the power of remembering. How it keeps people alive, how it is an excuse to remember, to tell stories, to celebrate and to reminisce.

Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge shows how powerful remembering can be, not just when someone has died. Children and Young People benefit from books like this being available so as to normalise remembering and talking about people who have died. It gives them permission to remember, and to think of the good times. Children have told us that reading these books at home with family members has allowed them to talk about people who have died and have really special conversations with their loved ones about them.

There are other books on our booklist that talk about memories, such as Badgers Parting Gifts or The Memory Tree.

To Absent Friends 1-7th November

To Absent Friends Festival takes place every year in Scotland, and is an ‘excuse to remember, to tell stories, to celebrate and to reminisce about people we love who have died’. By taking part, in some way, in the festival; it also allows us to create new memories too.

As a Change, Loss & Bereavement Group we plan to share some resources and thoughts with you over the coming days. Including our own wall of remembrance which you will be able to add to if you wish. Check out the To Absent Friends website for ideas of how to get involved, or for more information about it.

Understanding the impact of change and loss for children, young people and families – Training Dates

Just a quick reminder of our change, loss, bereavement training opportunities for the term ahead (and the rest of the school session). You do not need to book a place on these. Just sign in with the google meet code on the day.

For those looking for Seasons for Growth training, we have spaces on both the C&YP, and the Parent Programme next year. Scroll down to find our post about all of the training you can access relating to Seasons.

World Suicide Prevention Day 2021

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day, to read more about what is happening in Highland please see this news release from The Highland Council, in partnership with the Highland Community Planning Partnership.

If you are supporting a child or young person who has been bereaved by suicide please see our Tragic Events Guidance and our book list for resources and guidance on how best to help them.

Armed Forces Families – a focus on deployment and separation

We are pleased to be able to share some particularly useful information prepared by the Military Liaison Group and our Promoting Positive Relationships Co-ordinator; Lou Kinnear.

As you will no doubt be aware UK troops have now left Afghanistan and are returning to their bases.  Deployment is a cycle that involves the lead up to and the returning and resettling from a Deployment and can affect Children and Young People and their families in different ways.  The newsletter below should provide you with helpful information and advice that can support and be considered.

The MLG partnership works with Educators and Practitioners providing information, training and resources and provides helpful advice, guidance and support to families of Armed Forces.  Click Here to view the MLG website for further information.