Volunteers needed to help grieving Kentucky kids

Childhood bereavement is a prominent issue in Kentucky with one in ten children in the state...
Childhood bereavement is a prominent issue in Kentucky with one in ten children in the state being likely to lose a parent, sibling or caretaker by the age of 18.(WKYT)
Published: Apr. 22, 2022 at 3:28 PM CDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - People in Madison and Woodford counties are grieving this week following two separate crashes that took the lives of two students.

It’s been a tough week for central Kentucky schools.

“It’s heartbreaking,” said Woodford Co. Schools Superintendent Danny Atkins. “You hope it’s not true but, of course, as things panned out and more information was released, we found out that it was true.”

The conversation of loss is a difficult one to have regardless of age. A Lexington nonprofit is working to help children and families deal with the grief from these tragedies.

“At young ages and, even as young adults, and many times as adults, we don’t know how to deal with grief,” said Leila Salisbury with the Kentucky Center for Grieving Children and Families.

Childhood bereavement is a prominent issue in Kentucky with one in ten children in the state being likely to lose a parent, sibling or caretaker by the age of 18.

This raises the question, “how do we help those children that are dealing with loss?”

“We want to be there to help kids know they’re not alone,” Salisbury said.

The Kentucky Center for Grieving Children and Families offers student grief support groups in eight Fayette County schools.

“It’s so important for us to be in the schools because many of those kids, because of lack of resources or just overworked caregivers, ya know, wouldn’t be able to get resources outside of the school day,” said Salisbury.

The center is working to launch community-based groups in the fall, but they are going to need some help.

“We just need a consistent set of adults who want to come and just hang out with these kids,” Salisbury said. “There are no specials skills needed.”

Salisbury says, sometimes just listening can be the best way to help someone who is grieving.

Kentucky Center for Grieving Children and Families is trying to get into more schools moving forward. Click here for more information if you’d like to volunteer.

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