On Saturday, April 7, 2018, we held our very first healing retreat for families who have lost loved ones to violence. We were able to do this thanks to many people coming together. Professor Tracey Kim Snow from Beyond Healing Counseling hosted the event at her home in Homer Glen, IL. She, along with counselors and students from Governor State University, structured the day with group and breakout sessions focusing on:
trauma and anger management
grief help and how to live life after tremendous loss
tips for dealing with family and community after losing a child or sibling
art therapy, healing self-care, yoga & other mindfulness practices
The families shared their stories and learned tools for how to work through the trauma they've experienced.
Pictures from the Retreat
After the sessions, we all visited a salt cave to relax and enjoy some self-care time, then we headed out to dinner before heading back to Chicago.
We are so grateful for Kim and for all the volunteer counselors and students, including Laura, Krista, Dee, Marshelle, Lucas, Kelsey, Mary, Laura, Yemisi, Constance, Marie, Kulsum and Hayley.
Thank you to Thomas Shoebocks from Pinch Spice Market for making a tasty lunch for everyone, Max Rundberg from Chicagoland Expedited for the van rental so we could get everyone together, and of course all of our supporters and people who continue to donate to make this kind of therapy possible.
These families have been through unimaginable loss, but you help them know they are not alone. The mothers, fathers and siblings attending all said the retreat was very helpful and healing. We will continue to support them with monthly counseling sessions and other services. Your support really means the world to us and these families.