This is a press release submitted to the Las Vegas Sun. It has not been verified or edited by the Sun.
Solari Hospice Foundation Honors Children's Grief Awareness Day
Published on Tue, Nov 13, 2012 (8:35 a.m.)Las Vegas, Nev. - Nov. 13, 2012 - Experiencing the death of a close loved one can be overwhelming for anyone, but it can be especially difficult for children and teens who may not have the resources to cope. To help make the public more aware of the needs of grieving children, Solari Hospice Foundation joins with organizations and individuals around the country on Nov. 15 in observing Children’s Grief Awareness Day.
Observed on the third Thursday of every November (one week before the U.S. holiday of Thanksgiving), Children's Grief Awareness Day is intentionally set in the holiday season, often a particularly difficult time for those who are grieving.
“Children's Grief Awareness Day is an opportunity for all of us to raise public awareness of the painful impact that a death, particularly of a parent or sibling, can have in the life of a child,” says Jamie Muth, executive director of Solari Hospice Foundation, a non-profit organization that helps kids have brighter, more promising futures through Camp Solari bereavement camps and counseling support. “Suddenly, a child’s whole world changes. He or she may have a variety of conflicting emotions – ranging from anger and frustration to fear and abandonment. It’s so important that kids are able to be kids, find healthy ways to deal with their loss and learn to feel happy again.”
At Camp Solari, grief counselors use a variety of fun and therapeutic activities to teach children to express their feelings and move forward, while still honoring the memory of the deceased. In the Las Vegas area, Camp Solari is held twice a year – in May and October – at Mount Charleston Lodge. More than 80 people attended the camps in 2012. Camp Solari is open to children ages 6 to 17, along with their surviving caregiver(s). It is completely free to all participants thanks to donations and fundraising efforts. Applications are accepted year ‘round.
“It costs about $500 to send a kid to Camp Solari for a weekend, including counseling, food and lodging,” notes Muth. “The more money that is raised, the more children we can help.”
To help generate much-needed funds, Solari Hospice Foundation has established a “Sunshine Club.” School groups, scout troops and civic organizations looking for a meaningful way to give back to the local community can complete a service project to benefit Camp Solari. For example, kids might consider sponsoring a car wash, having a pizza party, or organizing a dog walking service and then donating the proceeds. With the help of adults, children could organize bake sales or garage sales or perhaps arrange for a karaoke party. Students can also earn community service hours for their time.
“When kids work together to help other kids in need, they develop caring hearts and a spirit of goodwill,” says Muth. “Our Sunshine Club is a grassroots effort that puts the ‘fun’ in fundraising, while also teaching kids to be responsible young citizens. We have lots of ideas that are easy to implement.”
Numerous creative suggestions for fundraising are included on the Solari Hospice Foundation website at www.solarihospicefoundation.org. Muth also encourages groups to use their imagination and come up with their own “send a kid to camp” campaign.
For more information about Camp Solari or to find out how you can get involved in Solari Hospice Foundation’s Sunshine Club, call Muth at 877-795-8760 or email Jamie@solarihospicefoundation.org.
Solari Hospice Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization established in 2002 to support children and families facing complex end-of-life issues. The Foundation provides education and bereavement support so young survivors can move forward with joy and hope, while continuing to honor the memories of those they have lost. For the past decade, the Foundation has realized this vision through an innovative bereavement camp, called Camp Solari, which provides professional grief counseling in a fun, relaxing and healing atmosphere. For more information about Solari Hospice Foundation, please visit www.solarihospicefoundation.org, follow @CampSolari on Twitter, or “like” Solari Hospice Foundation on Facebook.