Grief class offered to area students

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PRIEST RIVER A traumatic loss is one that is sudden, unexpected and can be confusing to understand.

Following the tragic death of a Priest River student, counselors at Priest River Lamanna High School and Priest River Junior High School have announced a three-week hospice session to help students who are having a hard time coping with the grief and loss of their friend, said Cherie Coldwell, 21st Century Program director at Priest River Lamanna High School.

Caring Friends Surviving Sudden Loss offers students support as well as a resilience-based skill-building group for teens who have experienced a sudden loss through death.

Offered by Bonner General Health Community Hospice In partnership with the Lake Pend Oreille School District, the program offers students a place where they can share their feelings of sadness and loss, as well as those of confusion, pain and grief stemming from the sudden loss of a friend.

The progam will be held Tuesday, Feb. 20, Monday, Feb. 26, and Monday, March. 5. All sessions take place from 3-5 p.m.

The program is limited to 20 students and a permission slip with a parent signature is required for attendance. Students or parent can pick one up at the counselors office at either school.

While feelings experienced during the grieving process are common, natural and normal, traumatic loss can overwhelm the everyday world. To help students, Coldwell said the program offers students three weekly sessions of support, encouragement and empowerment in moving through their grief journey.

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