Etcetera - 02/07/11

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Walla Walla Community Hospice provides a number of services to area residents at no charge. In order to do so, the 30-year-old community service agency must raise money. Net proceeds from its 24th annual Tree of Life observance raised $17,500 to benefit its programs. It was the organization's second-largest fundraising event in 2010, the winter 2011 newsletter reported. The event is "an important opportunity for people to acknowledge grief during the holidays."

WWCH offers several grief support opportunities during the year: Pre-registration is going on now for grief support groups that will meet on Wednesdays from 10-11:30 a.m. or 6-7:30 p.m. March 23-May 25 at the WWCH office, 1067 Isaacs Ave.

WWCH and the YMCA will collaborate to hold a children's grief support group for ages 6-10 who have experienced significant loss. Groups will meet from 3:30-5 p.m. Tuesdays for six weeks, beginning Feb. 15. Hospice social workers facilitate these gatherings, which will be at the Y, 360 S. Park St. They do activities that help the kids process emotional impacts of the loss they have experienced. And they will also have play time in various areas at the Y. This additional way to serve children throughout the year complements Camp Amanda, a three-day grief camp for children held in July.

"Children, just like adults, benefit from being with others who understand through experience the challenges that come with the loss of a loved one. They also need to know that it is OK to have fun again as they travel on their journey through grief," the newsletter reported. There is no charge, but call the WWCH office at 525-5561 to pre-register or e-mail info@wwhospice.org .

Living with Grief: Spirituality and End of Life Care, is another event that is free and open to the community. The Hospice Foundation of America's 18th annual National Bereavement Teleconference will be from 9-11:30 a.m. April 13. Continuing education credits are offered. Pre-register at 525-5561.

Students in need will be able to benefit from a new program launched by Pioneer Middle School to provide clothes and shoes, the Feb. 4 online Walla Walla Public Schools Week in Review reported.

Students and staff there created "The Closet" where students in need can browse for clothing, shoes, coats and other items.

Donations may be delivered to the school, 450 Bridge St., or contact Angie Gardea at Pioneer, 527-3050 or agardea@wwps.org.

Contact Annie Charnley Eveland at annieeveland@wwub.com or 526-8313.

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