Losing a loved one is difficult at any age, but dealing with loss is especially difficult for young people.
Every summer, Camp Courage uses an innovative combination of fun activities and sharing opportunities to help children between the ages of 6 and 17 cope with the recent death of a loved one. Val Owens, Volunteer Coordinator for the camp states,”Camp Courage provides traditional camp activities balanced by grief-related programming specifically designed to help youth of different ages process their grief in a positive manner.”
This year’s camp is set for June 13 & 14 and is held at the Goodwill Camp, 570 152nd Street, South Sioux City, Neb. It is facilitated by grief counselors, Hospice of Siouxland staff, chaplains, and volunteers.
Teen campers have special activities designed to help them understand the changes in themselves, as well as their families, after the death of someone close to them. They also will learn skills to help cope with the new challenges that grief presents.
Camp Courage, according to Owens, ”provides a supportive environment in which youth can acknowledge the death of their loved one, reflect on the relationship they had, gain an understanding of grief and loss, and discover the strength and courage they need to continue on in their own lives.”
All of the staff and volunteers have gone through extensive background checks, and have received special training in children’s grief issues. A nurse also is on staff to help dispense medication.
Children are able to attend Camp Courage at no charge, thanks to the generous support of the Annual Carrie Mach Memorial Golf Outing.