In March 2020, as we were preparing for Full Circle’s annual Live Your Dash luncheon, our largest fundraiser of the year, the world shut down and we were forced to reevaluate how we do business. We quickly gathered our staff, therapists, and group leaders, and moved forward in unchartered waters to adapt, serve, and connect with our community in new and creative ways.
At Full Circle, we know that every grief journey is different. A 2013 USA Today article quoted an expert who said “Loss creates injury” and called it “a new risk factor for poor health in the public sphere.”
While death is a normal part of life, our society does not completely understand the complications of grief that follow the death of a close loved one. How we wrestle with grief—and ultimately push ahead to a new normal—varies among individuals. According to research, many who need professional support to remain healthy are not getting it, jeopardizing their mental and physical health.
Over the last 20 months, Full Circle has worked hard to continue serving our community in Central Virginia. We’ve adapted our business model to meet the ever-changing environment amidst COVID-19 and have made it a priority to connect with those who need us most. Our trained, licensed professionals in grief and loss have been working diligently to respond during this unprecedented crisis.
Over the last 20 months, we have continued to offer:
- Grief support groups and individual counseling sessions virtually and in person as CDC guidelines safely allow.
- Helpful resources and useful information on dealing with the COVID-19 crisis on our website and social media channels.
- A virtual story-time series and at-home family activities to help children and families in their grief process.
- Consistent, virtual Conversations About Grief workshops and monthly support groups offered at no cost to the participants.
- Clinical case-management to past and current Full Circle group participants.
At Full Circle, we know and understand the negative effects of grief better than most. Since March 2020, when we adapted our business model in response to COVID-19, we have served nearly 250 people in our grief support groups and our individual counseling practice has increased from an average of 30 appointments a week, to 60-70 appointments per week, with at least half of those now being conducted in person.
We continue to provide virtual grief support through Parenting After Loss, Pregnancy After Loss, Conversations About Grief and Journeying Through Grief community programs. This week we’re halfway through our in person Fall groups which include Perinatal Loss, Overdose Loss, Suicide Loss, and our Hands on Healing family support group, and have started registering for our Winter 2022 groups.
Today looks very different than we could have ever anticipated but our team remains committed to adapting, serving, and connecting with our community as we support children, teens, adults, and families to grieve in healthy ways.