Grief and Bereavement Support

Grief is an individual experience, however it does not need to be done alone. Using a person-centred approach Hospice can provide support unique to the individual’s needs, while offering a community where people can openly share in their grief.

Hospice Simcoe’s Grief and Bereavement Program supports individuals and families who have experienced the death of a loved one within the last 5 years. This support may include case management, peer support programs, and/or psychoeducational groups. If we are unable to support you (ie requested support is beyond our scope), our Social Work team can assist with referring you to another organization.

We are unable to provide medical intervention or advice, clinical counselling, financial assistance, driving services, mental health counselling, legal intervention or advice, or ongoing open-ended counselling.

Peer Support Groups

People process and express their grief in many different ways. Recognizing these differences, we offer a variety of groups that are designed to ensure that those wanting support can participate in programs that resemble their style of grief. Groups can offer individuals with the opportunity to connect with others, as well as add to their supportive community that can be a positive influence as they navigate their way through grief. All groups that are hosted by Hospice are led by one of our Social Workers.

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This Bereavement Orientation package explores the importance of self-compassion during the grief journey and shares information on completing a Wellness Plan. In addition, ways to keep yourself healthy while grieving, coping strategies, and our body’s nervous system during grief.


We will explore Mindfulness Meditation as a way to be fully present, engaging in our lives with compassion and awareness, and learning to cultivate well-being, happiness and serenity. Bring your ‘Beginner’s Mind’, letting go of preconceived notions and unhelpful habitual patterns of thinking. Allow yourself to open to the wisdom of the present moment. Instruction and guidance will be adapted to the needs and backgrounds of the participants. A typical session will include guidance; sitting and moving meditation and mindful tea. No experience in meditation or movement is necessary to fully enjoy this class.

This beginner yoga series is designed for those who are grieving the loss of a loved one. Grief is not just a feeling, it has an impact on all areas of our being; the emotional, physical, social, and spiritual aspects of self are affected. This group attempts to address all of those aspects on some level. We will focus on proper breathing techniques, freeing up joints, and learning basic yoga postures along with guided meditation at the end of each class. You will be supported by trained hospice volunteers and will have the opportunity to connect with others who are also grieving.

This group is for all Hospice Simcoe Bereavement Clients regardless of age or activity level.

Walking with others can be a comforting and healing way to approach grief and loss. Being with others who share a similar experience can be of great comfort as each person gives and receives support gaining strength to face the long grief journey ahead.

Our walking group is facilitated by trained Hospice volunteers and is open to anyone in the area who has experienced the loss of a loved one.

Coffee Talk is a bereavement support group that meets each week for the purpose of mutual support and encouragement as you process through your grief and loss. These groups are capped at 8 participants and are open to anyone who has experienced the loss of a loved one.

Many people find it beneficial to participate in the creative process as it promotes emotional risk taking and a sense of wellbeing. The Expressive Arts support group provides an opportunity for participants to engage in visual art tasks each month in a relaxed group setting. No prior experience is necessary as our instructors will guide you to meet your potential and support the meaningful discussions that spontaneously emerge while you are exploring new ideas and expressing your own personal journey.

Your grief has an intelligence all its own. Let it tell you what it knows as you write. Journaling and story writing can help gain a sense of clarity and help sort out thoughts, feelings and experiences in a creative way. Writing can create a safe (even a sacred) space to explore and remember, uncover thoughts and feelings that are important to express. Hospice Simcoe is offering a writing support group for clients who have lost a loved one.

Books have the ability to transport readers into another world; they can also be quite helpful. For those that are grieving, books have the ability to validate and normalize their thoughts and feelings; all while providing insight into their experience.

If you or someone you know could benefit from some grief oriented reading, and connecting with others going through a similar journey; please join us for Hospice Simcoe’s monthly Book Club.

Hospice Simcoe’s Ended Beginnings program provides peer-support for parents and families who have experienced the loss of a pregnancy and death of an infant.

We are here to help with group support services offered to families across Simcoe County at no charge. This program will provide legacy creation and educational workshops.

Our monthly Smart Grief workshops are open to registered Bereavement clients who are looking for additional education and strategies regarding navigating their new normal. Workshops include topics such as Advance Care Planning, boundaries, and self-care. You are welcome to join one or all the following sessions. For future dates, please visit our Program Calendar.

Hospice Simcoe’s is introducing a NEW Men’s Bereavement group that offers a safe space to talk about the tough stuff related to grief. These meetings give participants an opportunity to connect with other men in a neutral and relaxed environment, while enjoying conversation around shared experiences.

Psychoeducational Support

Our psychoeducational groups support individuals in learning about their grief. Each group connects individuals bereaved due to a specific loss; such as parent loss or spousal loss. Together these individuals can be present for one another as they address their grief, identify and establish healthy coping skills, as well as explore what their new normal in life may look like.

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No matter how old you are, experiencing the death of a parent can be life-changing. Whether the death was sudden, or whether it was after a long illness, grieving this loss can be difficult and involve a variety of emotions. This closed group, held over eight weeks, is designed for individuals over 45 to make space to mourn and to explore ways to adapt the changes involved with losing a parent.

As a young adult (25-45), the death of a parent can be one of the most significant losses you can encounter. At a moment in life in which you are defining and refining your personal and professional self, the death of a parent can unsettle the expectation and promise of the future, and your ability to meet the daily demands of everyday life.

We offer an eight-week, closed group facilitated by a social worker and a volunteer to address issues related to the death of a parent, such as: coping with work, family and grief; managing the expectations of others; self-care; and talking to children about death.

To accommodate the needs of this particular demographic, this group is offered on a weeknight, from 6pm-8pm.

The grief of losing a sibling is one of the most misunderstood bereavement experiences, especially for an adult. The death of a brother or sister often brings with it a change in family dynamics, conflicting emotions and a loss of a shared history. This eight-week, closed group addresses and explores strategies related to this particular relationship loss.

When your life partner dies, it can be overwhelming. Navigating the weeks and months afterward can be a lonely, frightening experience. Meeting others who are experiencing similar losses and changes can be a lifeline during this time. Our partner loss group is an eight-week closed group program that provides a safe place to both mourn and to process the meaning of this significant life transition.

Please note, we offer a partner loss group for individuals over 55, and a young spousal loss group for those under 55 who are either working or raising children (or both).

This eight-week group is for those between the ages of 30-60 who have experienced the death of a spouse or partner. We recognize that the losses and challenges that come with losing a partner while still balancing the demands of raising children and working are different than those experienced in retirement. This group is structured and developed around some of the unique needs of this cohort, providing a safe place to readjust to the new normal that they find themselves in.

The death of any child, regardless of cause or age, is overwhelming to parents, who can never be fully prepared for their child to die before them. Parental grief is intense, long-lasting, and complex.

The grief and the healing process contain similar elements for all bereaved parents, but for those whose adult child has died, there are additional factors that may affect their grief. We offer an eight-week, closed group facilitated by a social worker and a volunteer to address some of the unique issues facing those who have experienced the death of an adult child, whether to a long-term illness or due to a sudden, traumatic cause of death.

View Our Program Calendar

For dates and further information about our programs and support groups, please visit our Program Calendar.

Program Calendar

Referral Request

Are you or a loved one interested in receiving one-to-one support or attending one or more of our groups? To inquire, for more information or to speak with one of our Bereavement Coordinators, please provide your information below so we can best assist you.