April 22 Events on Campus to Focus on Children and Grief

Information and activities focused on children and grief, an outgrowth of a partnership with a social justice class in the School of Education and Highmark’s Caring Place, will come to campus on Wednesday, April 22.

Students of Dr. Patricia A. Sheahan, an adjunct teaching Social Justice in Educational Settings, will host hands-on activities and share information about children and grief.

One of the activities, The Caring Place Information Stations, will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the second floor of the Union and feature Dr. Andrea Lurier, program manager of The Caring Place, a center that champions the cause of grieving children by creating awareness of their needs and providing programs. Lurier will be available to answer questions and share information about The Caring Place and its work in Pittsburgh and surrounding school districts, as well as National Children’s Grief Awareness Day.

As part of The Caring Place Information Stations, activities will include Word Clouds, which will allow visitors to add their own words to the hanging “clouds” regarding children’s grief and what to say to one who is grieving. Duquesne students will staff a table with materials to create cards for children and their families at The Caring Place.

To draw attention to children who are in grief—not only because of the death of family members but losses associated with incarceration, unemployment and other life circumstances—Sheahan and her sophomore class ask the campus community to wear blue on every Wednesday during April, but particularly on April 22. Several sororities, offices and departments across campus are also providing support for the activities. The students will post blue butterflies, representing hope for those who have lost a loved one through death, mental illness, divorce, deployment, homelessness, hunger and other reasons, across campus.

Beyond the campus community, students will be sharing information on The Caring Place with the schools where they have been assigned for field work this semester.