Caring Club Sponsors National Children’s Grief Awareness Day

Maille Larmon, Melina Walter, Grace Twitchell, Akayla Lewin, Amelia Swenski, Sarah Molnar, and Annaka Cwiklinski wore their blue T-shirts in support of National Child Grief Awareness Day.

Maddy Bruce and Akayla Lewin

One in every 20 children will experience the death of a parent before they graduate from high school. In our school alone, there are over 20 students who have experienced this. As a result, they will have to deal with unimaginable amounts of grief.

They don’t have to do it alone, though. There are many resources that will support them in their time of need. In our area, one specific place that helps children through the death of a parent is the Highmark Caring Place.

Highmark Caring Place is a center for grieving adolescents and their families and has been since 1997. It began in Pittsburgh and eventually branched out to Erie, Harrisburg and the Cranberry region. For 20 years, Highmark Caring Place has offered no-charge services to grieving families. Since the first facility opened in Pittsburgh, they have helped tens of thousands of families work through their grief.

At General McLane, we have a club called the Caring Club, which is tied to the Highmark Caring Place. The Caring Club was established a few years ago by Mrs. Hertel and has really taken off this year. They sponsor events throughout the year and are planning on having monthly events this school year.

On November 16, they sponsored National Child Grief Awareness Day and held several fundraisers for the cause. A Chinese Auction was held from November 13-16. During lunches, the club hosted a bake sale, which included blue baked goods baked by members of the club. T-shirts were sold to students and faculty leading up to the day, which brought in a lot of donations. The windows in the main entrance were decorated with the signature blue butterflies, which were drawn by senior Amelia Swenski, who had help from several members of the club.

On the success of the day, Swenski, the club’s president, commented, “I think it was well received. We’ve gotten a lot of compliments.” All of the proceeds from the fundraisers will go to Highmark Caring Place.