Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Sesame Street's New Initiative for Grieving Families

The National Alliance for Grieving Children is participating with Sesame Street Workshop and New York Life Foundation to distribute information and materials from a new initiative.

This is a great opportunity to increase national awareness about grieving families. Sesame Street Workshop is launching an initiative, When Families Grieve, which provides resources to support families coping with the death of a parent.

On Wednesday April 14th at 8 pm on most PBS stations, Katie Couric will lead a two-hour special to kick off the program. Excerpts from a new Sesame Street DVD will be shown, and she will interview some of the families (and Muppets) seen in the DVD. (Check local listings to be sure.)

In an interview aired on the Sesame Street website, Katie Couric discloses that she wanted to get involved in this issue because, when her husband died over a decade ago, she needed resources for her two daughters aged two and six – and the resources weren’t readily available.

Bereavement Programs can benefit many ways from this initiative.

Multimedia Resource Kits are available and include:
• A DVD featuring the Muppets and real-life families who have experienced the death a parent (clips are available on the Web site)
• Print Materials, including a guide for parents, a storybook, and a facilitator’s guide.

Order as many kits as you need
Bereavement programs/practitioners are strongly encouraged to order as many kits as they need from Sesame Street. Bereavement programs can provide individual kits to families or use them for programs. Consider ordering enough for every family in your program with young children. Bring the kits as part of any outreach that you do in local schools. Kits will be available free of charge starting on April 15 and will be available through the Sesame Street Workshop website.

Idea: Hold your own screening
Some programs are holding a screening of the special that is airing on 4/14, while others are going to show the DVD to their families. Other programs are providing their families with the DVDs and getting their feedback on this resource. You know what works for your community. Sesame Street has created some flyers, a tip sheet and an Elmo activity to help. Download those from the NAGC website.

Idea: Connect with your local PBS station
Some programs have been able to partner with their local PBS affiliates for this special show. This increases awareness about local resources.

New York Life, an NAGC supporter, will distribute 50,000 copies of the kits to their agents and field affiliates. The Sesame Street kit complements their bereavement booklet which is available for free download. Visit the National Alliance for Grieving Children's Web site to learn more about New York Life's booklet.

The National Alliance for Grieving Children promotes awareness of the needs of children and teens grieving a death and provides education and resources for anyone who wants to support them ~ because all grieving children deserve a chance to heal.

1 comment:

  1. Grief hits all age groups. Your blog defines grief in all its forms and helps us restore that satisfaction in practicing the art of medicine children and grief


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