Helping teachers to support young children experiencing loss

When a child or young person experiences loss through bereavement, parental separation or divorce; their life is forever changed. They need to be able to adapt to the challenges of this changed life. The response from their school, and the supports a school can offer are critical to help the child cope both now and, in their future. This project involves the design and implementation of a toolkit to be used by teachers to support children and young people in Primary School who have been affected by loss through bereavement, separation or divorce. Our partner charity the Children’s Grief Centre, the only centre of this kind in Ireland will also offer teachers in the mid-west region interactive experiential workshops to embed the learnings in the toolkit. The project aims to empower teachers with a knowledge of how children manage grief and bereavement, and ideas on tactics to employ to help the child cope.

When this proposed project is complete the teachers who have attended a workshop will be better informed on how to handle grief and loss in the school environment and this will help prevent emotional and behavioural problems that could affect the child into adult life. It is important that schools take a positive approach to loss and bereavement and provide opportunities to learn about these topics as a part of life as well as providing appropriate and timely support to children who are bereaved.