Making Art Therapy Accessible

Grief is complicated, particularly so for children. Hospice of the Piedmont’s Center for Children, part of our Center for Grief and Healing, provides the only free bereavement, grief, and trauma programs for children in our twelve-county service area. Each year, the Center for Children works with hundreds of children and their families, providing well over one thousand therapy and counseling sessions annually. Services provided by the staff, counselors, and volunteers of the Center for Children are made possible thanks to individual donors and local organizations.

In 2020, The Charles Fund supported our Center for Children Camps and enabled us to move to a virtual series of camps with a variety of events lasting throughout a week for grieving children. The virtual camps enabled more children to participate as they did not have to travel to Charlottesville from other areas in our service area. Unique virtual programs were created and we were able to offer more events to more children in our community.

Art therapy is a core component of all Center for Children programs, which provide private and group counseling, seasonal day camps, and workshops for children ages 4-18. The Joseph and Robert Cornell Memorial Foundation has long been a key partner of the Center for Children and Hospice of the Piedmont, including contributing to help the fall 2020 Journeys Camp to pivot from an in-person day camp to a week-long virtual experience. Virtual Journeys camps continue this spring, with offerings available in April, May, and June. To learn more about Journeys camps for kids and teens, please call 434-817-6915.

This year, the Joseph and Robert Cornell Memorial Foundation provided funding to expand programming in Fauquier, Rappahannock, and Culpeper areas by hiring an art therapist dedicated to the northern counties in our service area. This art therapist will be based out of Hospice of the Piedmont’s Culpeper office and will work with grieving children in our northern service area, significantly expanding the work of the Center for Children’s existing programs, staff, and professionals.

Teresa Haase, Director of Grief and Supportive Care Services for Hospice of the Piedmont, is excited to expand the Center for Children programs. She says: “We look forward to ensuring that our group can continue to provide accessible care to our area children and grow our offerings in the Fauquier, Rappahannock, and Culpeper area to ensure community knowledge about this important resource.”