Grief Resources

Find a list of books, support groups, social media related to grief and bereavement. In-person support groups and resources are located in the Calgary Alberta Canada area. 

Books

Picture Books for Children up to age 7

 

Cry, Heart, But Never Break

by Glenn Ringtved, Charlotte Pardi, et al.

Focus: Death comes to visit grandmother 

 

The Invisible String

by Patrice Karst and Joanne Lew-Vriethoff

Focus: Continuing bond or connection

 

The Memory Tree

by Britta Teckentrup

Focus: death of a friend and mourning

 

My Big, Dumb, Invisible Dragon

by Angie Lucas and Birgitta Sif

Focus: Death of mother and the grief after

 

Luna's Red Hat: An Illustrated Storybook to Help Children Cope with Loss and Suicide

By Emmi Smid

Focus: Death and Suicide

 

I Miss You: A First Look at Death

by Pat Thomas and Leslie Harker

Focus: pet loss

 

When Dinosaurs Die: A Guide to Understanding Death

by Laurie Krasny Brown and Marc Brown

 

In My Heart: A Book of Feelings

by Jo Witek and Christine Roussey

Focus: Emotions

 

The Heart and the Bottle

by Oliver Jeffers

Focus: Grief 

 

The Invisible Leash: An Invisible String Story About the Loss of a Pet

by Patrice Karst and Joanne Lew-Vriethoff

Focus: Pet Loss

 

 

Youth Fiction

Ms. Bixby's Last Day

by John David Anderson

Focus: End of life and illness.

Ms. Bixby unexpectedly announces that she is very sick and won’t be able to finish the school year, they come up with a plan.

 

King and the Dragonflies

by Kacen Callender

“Twelve-year-old Kingston James is sure his brother Khalid has turned into a dragonfly. When Khalid unexpectedly passed away, he shed what was his first skin for another to live down by the bayou in their small Louisiana town. Khalid still visits in dreams, and King must keep these secrets to himself as he watches grief transform his family.”

 

When You Trap a Tiger

by Tae Keller

“When Lily and her family move in with her sick grandmother, a magical tiger straight out of her halmoni's Korean folktales arrives, prompting Lily to unravel a secret family history. Long, long ago, Halmoni stole something from the tigers. Now, the tigers want it back.”

 

Older Teens & Adult Fiction

The Boy in the Black Suit

by Jason Reynolds

“Matt wears a black suit every day. No, not because his mom died—although she did, and it sucks. But he wears the suit for his gig at the local funeral home, which pays way better than the Cluck Bucket, and he needs the income since his dad can’t handle the bills (or anything, really) on his own.”

 

Early Departures

by Justin A. Reynolds

 

The Astonishing Color of After

by Emily X.R. Pan

“Leigh Chen Sanders is absolutely certain about one thing: When her mother died by suicide, she turned into a bird.”

 

Dancing at the Pity Party

by Tyler Feder

“Part poignant cancer memoir and part humorous reflection on a motherless life, this debut graphic novel is extraordinarily comforting and engaging.”

 

Youth (Non fiction)

Straight Talk about Death for Teenagers: How to Cope with Losing Someone You Love

By Earl A. Grollman

Teen Grief: Caring for the Grieving Teenage Heart

Gary Roe

 

Adult (Non Fiction)

 

Focus on general topic of Grief

Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief

by David Kessler

 

It's OK That You're Not OK: Meeting Grief and Loss in a Culture That Doesn't Understand

by Megan Devine and Mark Nepo

 

Focus on Parents helping Children:

When a Parent is Sick: Helping Parents Explain Serious Illness to Children 

By Joan Hamilton

 

A Parents Guide to Raising Grieving Children 

By Phyilis Silverman

Support Resources in Calgary area

Adult Grief Supports
AHS Adult Grief Support

Provides limited 6 sessions for adult grievers. A waitlist is usually in place and service may be over the phone depending on Covid restrictions.

http://www.albertahealthservices.ca/assets/programs/ps-1026229-grief-support-calgary-brochure.pdf

Hospice Calgary (Sage Centre)

Living with illness support group

 

Centre for Suicide Prevention


Call – 1.833.456.4566
Text- 45645
https://www.suicideinfo.ca/

CMHA- Calgary

https://cmha.calgary.ab.ca/individual-family-support/counselling/

Through our Suicide Bereavement Counselling, individuals are supported through one-to-one interactions to learn coping strategies to stay well after the loss of their loved one.

The Grief and Loss Program is for those struggling with death and non-death grief and loss experiences such as job loss, managing anxiety and fear, and making meaning after loss.

Wellspring (cancer)

https://wellspringcalgary.ca/

Wellspring Calgary is a warm and welcoming community that provides a comprehensive range of support, resources and programs so anyone living with cancer and the people who care for them can improve the quality of their lives.

Child and parent group that discusses living with cancer in the family.

https://wellspringcalgary.ca/portfolio/childrens-and-parents-program/

 
Alberta Hospice Palliative Care Association Programs

You’re Not Alone

https://ahpca.ca/youre-not-alone-grief-connection/

Free, ongoing support with a trained volunteer is available.

You’re Not Alone – Grief Connection (YNA) matches grieving adults with trained volunteers who have had a similar grief experience.

Once matched, the grieving participant and trained volunteer meet regularly by telephone for up to a year, if needed. The match is confidential; this is a safe space for the participant to speak openly about what they are experiencing.

 

Living Every Season Program

A support program for Albertans with life-limiting illness.

The Living Every Season program provides safe, confidential support in a social setting designed for adults who are living with a life-limiting illness.

The regular, interactive sessions of the Living Every Season program create an empathetic community for participants to connect with others, learn from speakers and continue to live a good life while also living with a terminal diagnosis. A life-limiting diagnosis can bring feelings of fear and isolation. The Living Every Season program is here to help.

Caring Beyond - parent support group

Caring Beyond offers peer support to parents who have lost a baby due to miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, stillbirth, neonatal death and termination due to poor prenatal diagnosis. We believe all losses to be equal regardless of circumstance or gestation. All of these babies were loved and wanted. We also provide information on various medical treatments and processes.

Child Loss - Adult Support
Alberta Children’s Hospital – Grief Support Service

Bereavement counselling and ongoing support following the death of a child.

This program is available to provide ongoing support to families when a child dies. Bereavement support is offered in many ways to fit the unique needs of a family, such as individual, family and group counselling, resources/education and referrals to community agencies.

To find out more about this program, call 403-955-5463 or 403-955-5474.

Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support Centre

https://pilsc.org/

Compassionate Friends of Canada

https://tcfcanada.net/

The Compassionate Friends offers support in the grief and trauma which follows the death of a child; no matter the age or cause. Peer supportive groups.

Children/Youth Support Groups
Bernie's Buddies

https://www.berniesbuddies.ca/

“Bernie's Buddies Workshops integrate a peer support environment where youth interact with other youth who've experienced a death loss in their lives. They participate together in a therapy dog visit, yoga exercise movement and mindfulness, and creative grief conversation to help each other find community while navigating emotions after a life-altering loss.

Rainbows Canada

https://www.rainbows.ca/

Groups for all ages to explore grief and loss. Volunteer run. 

Children's Grief Centre 

Provides 6 sessions of grief counselling for children and youth struggling with a death. Counselling is not trauma specific. 

Children's Grief Group 

Adolescent Grief Group

Carya

https://caryacalgary.ca/

Provider of family and child counselling - groups and individual counselling are offered. 
 

 

 
 
Websites 

https://whatsyourgrief.com/

A resource to share grief experiences but also to learn about grief. They have grief education for professionals and grievers, as well a supportive book that offers guidance when in mourning. 

https://www.childrenandyouthgriefnetwork.com/resources/

Great toolkits for families, teachers, and support workers, information on all things related to child and youth grief. Even info on how to talk to children about MAID.

 

Movies

Big Hero 6

Soul

Onward

Coco

Up

Stepmom

WandaVision

Surviving Death – documentary on Netflix talks about beliefs in life after death.

 

Social Media Accounts 

TikTok

@dr.sammywinemaker a palliative care Dr.

@hospicenursejulie a palliative care nurse

Podcasts