November is Children’s Grief Awareness Month and today is Children’s Grief Awareness Day.
Lansing is the home of Ele’s Place, a comforting environment for children who are dealing with the loss of a family member or close friend.
Today people can visit Ele’s Place for guided tours at 8a.m., 10a.m., 12p.m., 2p.m. and 4p.m. to learn more about the remarkable work being done in the community to help children deal with grief in their lives.
Ele’s Place was founded in 1991 by a group of mental health professionals, concerned community volunteers and grieving parents, Betsy and Woody Stover.
Following the death of their daughter, Helen Louise Snow Stover, known as Ele, at 11 months old, the Stovers saw that their three children ages 3-7 were grieving the death of their sister, but not in the same way they were as adults.
Following a great deal of research of other children’s grief centers across the country, it was determined that peer support for the grieving Stover children as well as kids and teens who had experienced the death of someone close to them, was the best way to learn to cope with their feelings of grief, sadness, anger and loss.
Nearly 30 years later, following humble beginings in the basement of a Lansing church, Ele’s Place now serves four communities in Michigan.