FARMINGTON – A program for grieving children and teens will hold a 10-week session beginning Tuesday, April 10, in Auburn and two eight-week sessions, one in Mexico beginning Wednesday, April 11, and one in Farmington beginning April 12.

The programs provide support for children and teenagers, ages 3 to 18, who have experienced the death of a parent, sibling, relative or friend.

Founded in 1998, the program is sponsored by St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center, Androscoggin Home Care and Hospice and Franklin Community Health Network.

It serves families from Androscoggin, Franklin, Oxford and northern Cumberland counties at no charge. The weekly meetings will be held on Tuesdays at the St. Philip’s Church on Route 4 in Auburn, Wednesdays at Meroby Elementary School on Cross Street in Mexico and Thursdays at the Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington.

Children meet weekly in groups for age-appropriate activities, games, art and other forms of self-expression. Adults meet at the same time to support one another and discuss ways to best meet their families’ needs. Groups are led by volunteers who have completed a 27-hour training.

To enroll in the program, a parent or adult support person should accompany a child or teen. Grandparents are also encouraged to participate. Preregistration is required so families can meet with program volunteers before the session begins.

In addition to sessions during the year, the program offers educational resources to the community and one-day workshops.

For more information about the program or to preregister, contact Joan Spitzform, bereavement assistant, Androscoggin Home Care and Hospice, at 777-7740 or 1-800-482-7412, ext. 1460.

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