We have over 120 stores nationwide, yet we’re very much involved with local issues at each of our locations. We’re keen to support local charities through practical help or simply by raising awareness of the work they do: this week, we’d like to highlight the work carried out by Grief Encounter.
Grief Encounter provides counselling and support for children who have lost a parent or other loved one. They have recently extended their service to provide extra services throughout the Covid epidemic: they are in great need of support from fundraisers, volunteers and donors to allow them to meet ever-increasing demand during these difficult times.
Grief Encounter was established by Dr Shelley Gilbert MBE in 2003 with the aim of supporting children, young people and families through bereavement. This service is free to access, funded through donations and fundraising efforts, so that all children and young people may access the help they need without having to worry about how to pay for it.
Dr Gilbert recognised the need to help children to process grief properly. In the UK, one child in every 29 under the age of 16 will experience the death of a parent. This is traumatic and devastating for any child, and proper care and support is vital to prevent them suffering long-term harm to their emotional wellbeing through fear, confusion and anxiety.
Grief Encounter helps children, young people and their families through the pain of grief and helps them to heal and move forward. They do this by providing family-focussed counselling and working with professionals within the grief sector by providing training to businesses and schools. There are some brilliant resources for schools
on their website.
They aim to provide an open-access bereavement service to over 500 families each year in the UK, and they are working to provide training to enable every school to have a Bereavement Liaison Contact Officer to support children in school.
Grief Encounter is entirely funded through public donations and fundraising events. They have loads of ideas and resources for schools
who may wish to run their own fundraising events, and they also organise several fundraising events
throughout the year. Supporters take part in mountain hikes, skydiving, and marathons to raise money for this amazing charity. Raising even just £35 will pay for a counsellor to work 1:1 with a child for an hour.
They have loads of ideas if you’d like to raise money
for them as an individual, too. They’re also really keen to accept your time as a volunteer if you can spare it: find out more here
If you need their support, you can contact them in a number of different ways:
- Call them on 0808 802 0111
- Chat online or
- email them at firstname.lastname@example.org
The service is available Monday to Friday 9am to 9pm to access support from trained professionals for immediate support and advice.
Grief Encounter and Safestore
As well as highlighting their work on a national level, we are proud to be able to support Grief Encounter by providing 50 sq ft of storage space
at our Staples Corner
store to enable them to free up space at their offices in Mill HIll. The extra space in their offices has enabled Grief Encounter to create a counselling room to support more children through bereavement.