Highmark Caring Place Serves Its 1,000th Central Pa. Family Through Grief Support Program

16 Apr, 2012, 07:00 ET from Highmark Inc.

LEMOYNE, Pa., April 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Highmark Caring Place in Lemoyne has reached a milestone in providing grief support services to the central Pennsylvania community at no cost to children and families in need. Since August 2003 when the local children's grief center opened, more than 1,000 families have benefitted from the group programs offered to those who have experienced the loss of a family member.

"When a parent or loved one dies, life is never the same for the child," said Caring Place Site Manager Dr. John Kajic. "While we wish there would not be a need for a community resource like ours, the fact is that one in 20 children will lose a parent before graduating from high school. It is an honor to look back at the 1,000 families that we have served, providing them the opportunity to find hope again in the midst of their grief."

The Lemoyne facility for children and families coping with grief throughout the midstate joins similar programs at Caring Place facilities in Pittsburgh, Erie and Warrendale, Pa.

For those in need of support during their journey of grief, but do not live close to a Caring Place facility, a variety of material is available online to help families cope. The staff at the Caring Place can also provide information about additional grief support programs in Pennsylvania and across the country. Several of the Pennsylvania programs have been trained in the Caring Place model.

Adult volunteers work closely with the children. "Trained volunteers are the heart of our program, and they provide encouragement and support to help children and families discover that they're not alone in their grief," said Kajic. "The generosity of Highmark and many individuals and community partners throughout the area also help us to provide this much-needed resource to those in need."

Peer support sessions are offered at various times throughout the year. Families that are interested should call the Highmark Caring Place. Reference and resource tools are also available by visiting the Caring Place's website at www.highmarkcaringplace.com.

"We look forward to providing ongoing support services in the years ahead to children and families in need in Lemoyne, as well as across the state," said Kajic.

For more information about the services offered by the Highmark Caring Place, call 1-866-613-HOPE (4673).

SOURCE Highmark Inc.