I’ve now run a number of courses on Zoom on being a “Grief Companion” – that is, learning more about grief and how to support those who are grieving, whether informally with friends, family and colleagues, or as part of a pastoral role. The feedback has been excellent.
I learn more each time I run the course. One thing I’ve realised is that participating in the course can bring out thoughts or feelings that had been tucked away, so I make myself available for individual chats and respond personally to emails.
If you’d like to take part in the next course, there are still a few spaces. We begin on Friday 1st October at 4:30 pm.
The training is interactive with opportunities to discuss, contribute and ask questions. We look at the experience of grief and how we can support those who are grieving from practical perspectives, though we also include some Christian perspectives which makes this training a little bit unique. (However this is not concerned with theology or beliefs about the next life, but about the lived experience of those who are grieving following the death of a loved one.)
The sessions will start at 4:30 pm (the meeting room is open 15 minutes earlier for chatting) on
- We will use the Zoom video conferencing platform for this training.
- There will be six sessions each lasting 1 ½ hours. (I suggest you try to make yourself available for a full 2 hours if you can, as we open the room 15 minutes early for chatting, and there is 15 minutes at the end for questions and recapping.)
- You will also receive notes and links with recommended reading after each session.
- Registration is required.
- There is a maximum of 12 places on the course.
- The first session is an introduction and is free to attend.
- If you wish to continue the course, there is a one-time fee of £30
- Participants will need a device to see the screen, preferably a tablet or computer. (Phone in participation is not possible.)
- You will need Zoom installed on your device. Zoom is free and easy to use.
Good news! We are in the UK, but you do not have to be a UK resident to attend. We have chosen a time of day that we hope will make this course accessible for those in other parts of the world.
Please note: If you are presently struggling with your own grief, then this course will not be suitable for you. Also, we do not recommend this course if you have suffered a significant bereavement within the past 18 months. If you have any questions about this – or anything else – please get in touch.
- Living with Loss: Understanding grief
- Expressions and experiences of grief
- Goals of grieving and the duration of grief
- Continuing bonds of love
- The language of grief
- Walking alongside grief
You can find out more about the content of the course at this link: https://griefcompanion504627506.wordpress.com/about/grief-companion-training/
Feedback from participants
“Another enjoyable but challenging session”
“Thank you for these sessions – they really are informative and useful.”
“I have appreciated every aspect of the course and can’t really think of anything I would have wished to be different. Each session was about the right length, and using Zoom was an effective way of making the teaching available. It was a practical course with plenty of realistic ideas, and there were good visual illustrations. I liked the way you ensured there was plenty of time for repetition and recap. I also appreciated the Biblical perspective. Thank you so much for the course, for making it available and for your gentle and wise teaching. I will most definitely recommend it to others.”
“Thank you so much for the Grief Support course. The 6 sessions were well planned and structured, with prayer ideas and resources included. … I would certainly recommend the course to others. It worked really well on Zoom … Above all your gentle and authentic presence and input has been gratefully received.”
“It was more than I expected. I think you were very sensitive to the possible needs of everyone on the course and from the outset invited dialogue via email or zoom both with any questions that arose or with areas that touched us personally. That was welcome and helpful to receive your response. I would recommend the course to others and would include that care and compassion if they were in anyway anxious.”
“What stood out for me was the range of teaching for differing situations – it’s not a one step covers all. … For me there was much that applied to my situation and much that I can use in my community – feel comfortable about approaching the bereaved.”
Grief can be a lonely and isolating experience. We can each make a difference to those who are grieving by being a companion to them. That’s what this course is about.