Good Grief Volunteers Make History

This fall marks the start of Good Grief’s 11th program year and for the first time ever, the organization is celebrating 10-year anniversaries of their committed volunteers. Good Grief provides unlimited and free support to children, teens, young adults, and families after the death of a mother, father, sister, or brother through peer support programs, education, and advocacy. Good Grief launched their evidence-based peer-support programming in 2007 out of Christ Church in Summit with 36 participants. Good Grief has grown steadily and rapidly ever since in order to keep up with the tremendous demand for grief support throughout New Jersey. With centers now in both Morristown and Princeton, Good Grief serves over 800 participants with the help of 200 dedicated volunteers.

Sue Logan, a 10-year volunteer facilitator, joined Good Grief at the onset of its programs,” My husband died from suicide when my son was only 15 and at that time, there was no grief support for our family. When Good Grief came to Summit, I saw an opportunity to use my experience with loss to help others.” In her time at Good Grief, Sue has seen changes both in the participants and in herself, “ The families walk through Good Grief’s doors from all walks of life and in this space, they share their stories and form a bond. I have seen how important it is to listen and really hear. I have come to realize that finding others that have had the same experience is essential to the healing process. “

Good Grief celebrated the anniversary of the 10-year volunteers at the Summer Institute, Good Grief’s annual education symposium. The Summer Institute brings together volunteers from Morristown and Princeton and serves to build resilience, skills, competency, and community, while maintaining the highest professional standards and outcomes for Good Grief’s services. After a day full of workshops and panels, CEO Joe Primo looked out at the volunteers and said, “Throughout all of the hurdles over the past 10 years, there was one thing we could always rely on and that was the goodness of people, the goodness of our volunteers. Because of our volunteers we have been able to keep saying ‘yes’ to kids, to keep growing, and to keep supporting New Jersey’s grieving families. Our volunteers have continued to say ‘yes’ to this mission when for these families, everybody else is running away.”

Over the past 10 years, Terry Blagdon (New Providence), Adam Kenney (Millington), Stephanie Kenney (Millington), Sue Logan (Summit), Joe Primo (CEO), Leigh Rainey Rosoff (Summit), and Pam Sullivan (Chatham) have given to Good Grief as volunteer facilitators by creating a safe and caring environment where children, teens, young adults, and families can express themselves, care for each other, and rebuild their lives together. Joe Primo concluded the ceremony with words of gratitude, “We are very fortunate to be doing this work. In return, we’re learning how precious life is and with this knowledge, we are given the opportunity to live a richer, fuller, and a more meaningful life. This is a group of people who have made a commitment to the next generation of children; a group of people who believes that a good life requires community. I am truly moved and inspired, Good Grief is a better place because of each and every one of you.”

###

 
Good Grief is respected as a national leader in delivering grief services to children and their families. It is the leading provider of these services in New Jersey, serving over 1,000 children since its founding in 2004. Good Grief is a registered 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, non-profit organization whose mission is to provide unlimited free support to children, teens and families after the death of a parent or sibling. Servicing more than 200 Communities, Good Grief operates programs in Morristown and Princeton. For more information: www.good-grief.org.

For more information, contact:

Joseph Primo, CEO                                         Courtney Hodock, Director of Development

908-522-1999 x 8011                                      609-498-6674 x 8010