A call for submissions – children helping children

Published 9:08 am Tuesday, May 8, 2018

I have been writing this weekly column for four years now and one of the things that I have discovered during its run in the paper is that people enjoy receiving the feeling validation that occurs when reading how others are going through very similar things upon their grief journey.  With that said, I have been thinking long and hard about a new project that would benefit kids and teens, their families and those who support them.  But, in order for this project to work, I require assistance from the community and from places beyond where we live.  The project?  I am seeking written submissions from children and teens ages 5-18 that have experienced the loss of a loved one.  What am I looking for specifically and why?

To put it bluntly, there are simply not enough resources out there for kids who are grieving.  Long ago, I recognized this and started a grief camp for kids, which has been amazing but it is only held one day a year.  I also noticed that when you bring kids and teens together within a group setting, they share real and honest feelings and are able to communicate pretty amazing things that not only help themselves but help others as well.  So, with that said, I am asking for help from those kids/teens who have and are currently experiencing grief and loss.  I am asking that they write about their experience, their feelings, what helped them or hurt them.  I want to know their opinions and feedback so that I can create a space in which their “real life” exposure to the ups and downs of losing someone that they love can provide the practical knowledge to be used by others who find themselves walking a similar path.

My plan is to write a book that is compiled of thoughts and observations from kids and teens of all ages.  I am looking for honesty and truth as well as the things they feel could possibly benefit another kid their age that is grieving.  It’s all about children helping other children and providing the things that are more likely to be impactful and benefit them- a “Pay it forward” mentality if you will.  And so, I am accepting submissions and am asking that you tell your friends, family members and contacts about this project.  Help me reach kids and teens across the country who would love to share their experience and in doing that, help someone else navigate through perhaps one of the most difficult times of their lives.  Poems, short paragraphs, essays, drawings, one liners, quotes- whatever helps them describe the things that they wish for others to know and assist them- that is what I am searching for with this project.  Children and teens helping children and teens- What could possibly be more impactful?

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Submissions will be accepted until July 1st 2018 and can be emailed to: jfilush@charter.net or mailed to:

Jenny Filush-Glaze, LPC

665 Opelika Rd #200

Auburn, Al 36830

Let us work together to make a difference in the lives of our children.