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Grief and Bereavement Resources

What are some options?

Many people process grief with the support of loved ones and other strategies for self-care. But some people may need extra support from a mental health professional. Grief counselling helps people through the unique difficulties of grief. Peer support groups and family therapy may also be helpful.

Bereaved Families of Ontario – Toronto

250 Merton St., Toronto, ON

416 440-0290

Services offered: Eight-week bereavement support groups for parents, spouses, young adults and adults: open groups are held throughout the year, and closed groups run at least three times a year

Eligibility: Bereaved family and friends; you must complete an intake before your first group Referral: Self-referral

Bereaved Families of Ontario

12 locations across Ontario, see website for details

Services offered: Six-week closed groups for adults, seven-week groups for children four to 13, one-day teen  workshops for ages 13 to 19, one-on-one support, lending library, reading material package on various topics can be mailed out; programs facilitated by trained volunteers who are grieving themselves 

Eligibility: Ages four and older

Referral: Call the affiliate in your area: phone numbers and e-mails of each area office available on the website 

Catholic Family Services Toronto

See website for locations

416 921-1163 ext. 2227

Services offered: Parish-based peer support and counselling for bereavement, separation and divorce (New  Beginnings) 

Grief Recovery After a Substance Passing (GRASP)

St. Bonaventure Church, 1300 Leslie St., North York, ON

647 274-3224

Services offered: A community of help, compassion and understanding for families or individuals who have had a loved one die as a result of substance misuse or addiction; groups held Wednesdays from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Referral: Pre-registration is required for new attendees

Note: This is a non-denominational group; although it is in a church, it is not church-based

Jewish Family and Child

4600 Bathurst St., Toronto, ON

416 638-7800 ext. 6234 (intake)

Services offered: Six-week bereavement groups: one for widows and widowers over the age of 65, another for  widows and widowers under the age of 65 and a third for people who lost a parent as an adult

Eligibility: All are welcome

Fee: $100 per person, but available on a sliding scale

Hospital-Based Counselling

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health

100 Stokes St., room 5274, Toronto, ON

416 535-8501 ext. 32175

Services offered: One-on-one grief counselling for clients and families

Referral: People who are not currently CAMH clients can be referred by their psychiatrist or GP if services are required for more than two or three sessions

Eligibility: Current CAMH clients or family members who have experienced a loss

Scarborough and Rouge Hospital

3050 Lawrence Ave. E., Scarborough, ON

416 438-2911 ext. 5334

Services offered: One-on-one support counselling during the grief and bereavement process, which is offered by  a spiritual care practitioner who is also a psychotherapist

Eligibility: People who have experienced the death of a parent, partner, child or friend

Referral: Self-referral or referral through a doctor

Support Services

The HOPE Program

1 800 883-6094

Services offered: Program that provides confidential support to military families who have lost a loved one

Eligibility: Military family members

Referral: Self-referral

Soaring Spirits International

2828 Cochran St. #194, Simi Valley, CA

877 671-4071

Services offered: A widowed community offering widowed men and women understanding, friendship,  inspiration and encouragement after the loss of a partner; provides information, resources, a widowed forum with 24/7 chat and forums, Camp Widow and a pen pal program

Eligibility: Contact them by phone or e-mail above

Turner & Porter: Community of People Extending Support (COPE)

2357 Bloor St. W., Toronto, ON (and other locations in Mississauga and Etobicoke)

416 767-6793

Services offered: A six-week support group for people who have experienced the death of someone near to them,  and then monthly group meetings for additional support

Eligibility: People over the age of 18

Referral: Call or go online to register

Fee: None

WoodGreen Community Services

815 Danforth Ave.,main floor, Toronto, ON

416 645-6000 ext. 5260

Services offered: Individual and group bereavement support (includes service referral, service navigation and co ordination when required) to individuals and families

Referral: Call to register

Fee: None

Suicide and Bereavement

CMHA Middlesex Suicide Bereavement Support

See website for locations in Middlesex

519 434-9191 ext. 244

Services offered: Support by telephone or in-person (in Middlesex), including one-on-one counselling, support groups, workshops and education 

Eligibility: People affected by death by suicide

Toronto Distress Centres, Survivor Support Program

10 Trinity Sq., Toronto, ON

416 595-1716

Services offered: One-on-one counselling and support for individuals or families provided by trained and supervised volunteer teams, follow-up group meetings, telephone support, consultation and debriefing for professionals and community members affected by suicide or homicide

Eligibility: Adult family members and friends who have experienced a death by suicide or homicide

Referral: Self-referral

Note: Support sessions held at various locations, including in-home

Children and Youth

Bereaved Families of Ontario – Toronto/What’s Up Walk-In

1200 Markham Rd., suite 200, Toronto, ON

416 440-0290

Services offered: Services for those who are grieving a homicide, suicide or death due to natural causes; groups are held Mondays from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

Eligibility: Youth between the ages of 13 and 19

Referral: Drop-in

Dr. Jay Children’s Grief Centre

250 Davisville Ave., suite 405, Toronto, ON

416 360-1111

Services offered: Grief counselling to dying children and to children whose parent or sibling is dying; bereavement program services also include family events, therapeutic groups and Camp Erin, a weekend bereavement camp for children and youth age six to 17; counselling is provided in the home while the family member is palliative, and at their centre once the person has died

Eligibility: Families with children under 21; for children age 4 or younger, support is offered mainly to parents and/or caregivers (all parents and caregivers are eligible for parenting support)

Referral: Referrals are accepted from any source, including self-referrals; download the referral form from their website

Regesh Family and Child Services

149 Willowdale Ave., lower level, Toronto, ON

416 495-8832

Services offered: Play therapy program for children coping with grief and loss, serious illness of a family member, adoption or foster care, bullying, abuse, violence and/or poor self-esteem

Eligibility: Children ages four to 12

Referral: Call for an appointment

Fee: Sliding scale based on income

Hospice and Palliative Care

Canadian Virtual Hospice

Services offered: A Canada-wide website that provides information about palliative care associations, drug/benefit programs, home care programs, residential hospices and other programs and services

The Dorothy Ley Hospice

220 Sherway Dr., Etobicoke, ON

416 626-0116

Services offered: Bereavement care; one-on-one or group support for caregivers, families and friends anticipating a loss or dealing with the aftermath of a death; referrals to other community services as needed

Hospice Palliative Care Ontario

2 Carlton St., suite 808, Toronto, ON

416 979-9779 ext. 28

Services offered: Information and links to Ontario-based palliative care services and bereavement support groups

The Temmy Latner Centre for Palliative Care

60 Murray St., 4th floor, Toronto, ON

416 586-4800 ext. 7884

Services offered: Physical, emotional and spiritual support to adults who are dying at home

Eligibility: People in certain areas of the GTA; see their website for a map outlining their service area

Referral: No referral required for a patient already being seen at the centre; if new to the centre, they need a referral from a doctor or CCAC for palliative care.