Childhood Bereavement Network. Childhood Bereavement Network: Staying connected when someone is seriously ill. 2020.

#SayTheWords: Supporting grieving children

02 October 2020
Volume 1 · Issue 5


Children's Grief Awareness Week is especially poignant this year given the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic

It is a sad fact, but in this year of COVID-19 more schools than ever have been called upon to support grieving pupils. As well as those bereaved by the coronavirus itself, many children have experienced the death of someone they love from other causes, including cancer, sudden death or suicide. Sadly, the country has experienced more overall deaths than usual this year, and this means that more children have been bereaved.

Since March, physical distancing measures have affected all bereavements. Many children and young people have been unable to spend time with or say goodbye in person to a dying loved one, whether in hospital, hospice, care home or a different household. The Childhood Bereavement Network (2020) has produced guidance to help families stay connected to someone who is so ill they might die, even at a distance. Restrictions on the numbers attending funerals also mean that many children and young people have been unable to share in these important rituals of shared grief. Usually, spending time with family and friends and supporting one another can help children and young people come to terms with the death of someone close, but it is harder to do this at a distance. To overcome this, CBN has also shared suggestions to help young people reach out for support from parents and friends (see If you have been bereaved).

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