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Peer Support Group
Facilitators work with children and their families one evening per week in the Bereavement and TLC programs, and one afternoon a week in the Intercultural Program.
- Volunteer Facilitators are asked to make a commitment of one-year.
- All facilitators must complete an intensive 30+ hour training. Volunteers in the Intercultural Program receive additional training.
- To ensure the safety of our families and volunteers, background checks are conducted.
- Facilitators must be at least 18 years old.
Interested in learning more? Click below to view the next dates we will be holding our information sessions.
Ann Marie’s father died when she was young, and there were no programs like the Center for Grieving Children at that time. She feels that knowing you are not alone in your loss and having others who have shared similar experiences can make all the difference.
7 Years at the Center
Paul is a long-time facilitator who cares deeply about the Center. He received a 6 Who Care award in 2007 (United Way and WCSH6), recognizing his work with the Center. He says he does this work “to give children a voice.”
15 Years at the Center
Lynn first became involved with the Center in 1998 when she attended the Tender Living Care program with her 3 year-old son Ben. After Ben’s father died of brain cancer, Lynn then joined the bereavement group on Thursday nights, and she began volunteering at the Center in 2000 before serving on the board for four years. After her four years on the board, Lynn participated as a facilitator for seven years.
19 Years at the Center
Steve Hart learned how to hug at the Center for Grieving Children when he started volunteering in 2002. “For the first time in my life, I was encouraged to be emotional, I learned to show emotion, and I grew as a man.” Steve’s role and that of his fellow volunteers is “not to fix anything, but to bear witness, without judging, to the grief journey of Center families.” Steve calls the volunteers “hearts with ears.”
17 Years at the Center
Ryan, Principal at Kennebunk Elementary School, reached out to the Center for support following devastating losses at his school. Ryan went on to be an active volunteer at the Center. “It has been incredibly rewarding for me and it has helped me to grow....anybody, regardless of what is currently going on in their life, whether they are in a good place or not, can benefit from circle processing and having the opportunity to reflect on how they feel and think about their life."
8 Years at the Center
Deb is a mentor and role model for new facilitators. She encourages them to contribute as equal partners and is willing to problem solve and work collaboratively. She handles challenging situations with grace and professionalism and is eager to be of service. Deb always has a smile and a kind word for everyone, and is greatly appreciated by fellow facilitators and families. Deb embodies the work of the Center and is an ambassador, advocate and supporter in the service of healing.
Let’s get started!
The first step for those interested in volunteering in ANY capacity at the Center, is to attend a one-hour information session (dates listed to the right). Email email@example.com to register! You may complete the volunteer application below prior to attending, or just come to the session to learn more.
30 hour Facilitator trainings to prepare individuals to facilitate in Center peer support groups happen numerous times throughout the year. Below is the next training schedule. Videos will be assigned to watch between some sessions. In-session times are approximate (most weeknight sessions will end earlier) and will be finalized when we have the agenda. Training sessions are being held virtually via Zoom.
Facilitator Training - January 2024
Tuesday, January 16th: 5:30 – 7:30
Thursday, January 18th: 5:30 – 8:00
Saturday, January 20th: 9:00 – 3:00
Tuesday, January 23rd: 5:30 – 8:30
Thursday, January 25th: 5:30 – 8:30
Saturday, January 27th: 9:00 – 3:30
Volunteer Information Session (VIS) Schedule
- Tuesday, November 28 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
- Friday, December 8 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
- Wednesday, December 13 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
- Monday, December 18 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Ways to Give
Bill Hemmens Legacy SocietySEE MORE
Bill Hemmens Legacy Society
We all want to know that we have made a difference in our lifetime, especially for a cause that is close to our hearts. By joining the Bill Hemmens Legacy Society, you can ensure that
the Center is here to meet children’s and families’ need for grief support far into the future.
By joining the Bill Hemmens Society, you create a lasting gift of hope for grieving children and families.
The Society is named in honor of Bill Hemmens, who founded the Center following the death of his sister. In trying to find help for his niece Erin, Bill recognized that children need peers and caring adults to support them through their grief, because death profoundly affects every aspect of their lives.
Give in MemorySEE MORE
Give in Memory
Gifts made in memory of a loved one are a special honor for the Center to receive. Those who give them say it’s comforting to contribute to our support of children and families experiencing loss.
The Center also accepts tribute gifts that honor a living person or mark a special occasion such as a wedding, birth, anniversary, birthday, or graduation.
The Center will also send an acknowledgement of your gifts to the person or the family of the person whose life or occasion you memorialized or honored.
Star Memorial Wall DonationSEE MORE
Star Memorial Wall Donation
Our Star Memorial Wall is a home for golden stars shining on a purple-tinged wall, in memory of loved ones. It is located at the Center in the room where families gather for an evening’s opening circle.
The wall was inspired by the story, The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupery. The little prince learns he can recall happy memories of a friend who has died by looking up at the night sky “as if all the stars were laughing.”
For a donation of $250 or more, the Center will arrange to have a Memorial Star inscribed with the name of someone you want to memorialize. The star becomes a permanent part of the wall—a wall inside a building that can be filled with the emotions of grief but also happy memories and laughter. There’s a lot of laughter heard at the Center at night, as if all our stars on our wall are laughing.
Purchase a star as an individual—like the child who did just that with the money she asked friends to give her as a birthday present—or with contributions from a group of people.
Become a Corporate PartnerSEE MORE
Become a Corporate Partner
Our Corporate Partners support all we do here at the Center. These companies support our peer support programs, our community outreach, facilitator trainings, and more—and ensure that all of our services remain available to children and families at no cost, for as long as they need them.
Thank you to our Corporate Partners!
Our Corporate Partners provide year-round support to our Center families. This personal and fully customizable partnership allows companies offers numerous recognition opportunities throughout the calendar year while helping to ensure our services remain available to families at no cost. To learn more about our Corporate Partnership program or individual event sponsorships, please contact: Emma@cgcmaine.org
To see our upcoming sponsorship opportunities, check out our events.
Wish ListSEE MORE
- Artists and craftsman
- Best Buy
- Gas Cards
Toys & Arts & Crafts
- LED Candles: unscented, please
- Arts & Craft Supplies: (No kits please)
- Big Rolls of Paper: white, brown, and black roofing paper
- Fimo Soft Polymer Clay
- Bottles of School Glue & Modge Podge
- Tape: dispensers, masking tape, scotch tape, duct tape, and colorful tape
- White t-shirts, pillowcases, & tie-dye supplies
- Toys – We can accept new toys. We cannot accept used toys.
- Dress Up Clothes: Child-Size Doctor Coat & toy stethoscope
- Soft Foam Balls and Blocks
Cleaning and Household Supplies
- Cleaning Supplies
- Cloth Dish Towels
- Dish Soap & Dishwasher Detergent
- Coffee & Tea
- Hand Soap
- Light Bulbs
- 3 or 5 oz paper or plastic cups
- Paper Plates
- Paper Towels
- Toilet Paper
- Trash Bags – kitchen size
- Office Supplies: 8 ½ x 11 White Laser Printer Paper; 8 ½ x 11 Colored Laser Printer Paper; Green or White Binders (1 Inch Width); Green Folders; Manila File Folders; Notebooks and Notepads; Paperclips; Post-It Notes; Staplers, staples
- Flip Chart Pads and markers
- Storage totes/bins
- Batteries: double or triple A
Garden and Facility
- New Floor Lamps
- New Extension Cords and Power Strips
- New Floor Fans
Please Note: Items the Center does NOT need: Character Items, Coloring Books, Crafting Kits, Crayons, Used Toys; Board Games and Puzzles, Stuffed Animals; Beanie Babies
If you are interested in donating an item please call the Center at (207) 775-5216 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your Community EventSEE MORE
Your Community Event
We are so lucky to be a part of a community that wants to give back. We would love to hear from YOU! Should you wish to host a fundraiser, community event, or private reception to benefit the Center, please reach out to Emma at email@example.com. We look forward to making your ideas a reality.
Does your employer participate in community service? We gladly accept volunteer help from local businesses as part of their community giving programs. We fulfill company volunteering hours with projects such as painting, cleaning, organizing, bulk mailing, gardening, and more. If you’re interested in signing your business up for volunteer hours, please contact us. We welcome the opportunity to work with you!
Our Corporate Partners support all we do here at the Center. Their annual gifts support our families year-round through collaborative, entirely customizable campaigns. These partners support our peer support programs, our community outreach, facilitator trainings, and more—and ensure that all of our services remain available to children and families at no cost, for as long as they need them.