Children's Grief Camp

Children's Grief Camp 2023: Ten years of providing farm-based activities, animal assisted interventions, and grief related services to children who have experienced trauma.

Investing in the children who have tough hurdles early in life is a huge investment in their future independence and welfare. All children, regardless of socioeconomic status or life experiences have value and belong. Vulnerable children are not a burden and it is our collective responsibility to help them understand that they matter and are worthy of a quality life.

Children's Grief Camp is made possible through the generosity of private donors, family foundations, volunteers, community partners, therapists, and trauma counselors. On behalf of the children served over the past decade, and those we will serve in the future, please accept our heartfelt thank you.

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This camp is open to children ages 6 to 14 who have experienced the loss of a loved one through illness, accident, homicide or suicide. We also serve children who are in foster care or kinship care due to neglect or abuse as well as children living with family addiction. According to the National Alliance for Grieving Children, those children who suffer a significant loss are at a greater risk for depression, suicide, substance abuse, and poverty. The United States Department of Health & Human Services reports that childhood trauma is a risk factor for nearly all behavioral health and substance use disorders. Yet, children can and do recover from traumatic events.

Farm-based activities coupled with grief education sessions and activities help reduce children's feelings of isolation, loneliness, guilt, anger, fear, stress, and anxiety. Children also learn appropriate ways to express complex feelings related to their circumstances.

Working with certified grief professionals and Hillside's trained camp counselors, children will work and play side-by-side with others who are also grieving. Farm-based responsibilities and activities combined with grief education and emotional support will provide opportunities for children to share their stories, express feelings, and memorialize their loved ones as well as build new friendships.

Children's Grief Camp is made possible through the generosity of individual donors and private foundations.

To learn more about Children's Grief Camp, please send an email to Suzanne Kapral at