Before 11 year old Benjamin’s dad died, he would build the most spectacular blanket forts. The two of them would take over the living room, including the TV, with the largest blanket in the house. All weekend they would hunker down watch TV, play board games, read and snack. Together, they created a man cave all their own.
Building these forts and spending time with his dad are some of Benjamin’s most cherished memories. A continuing emotional bond is a clinically identified need for the healthy bereavement of children and teens who have experienced the profound loss of the death of a parent.
Family Lives On will make it possible for Benjamin to celebrate his and his dad’s fort-building tradition. This year, Benjamin will receive an extra large blanket, snacks, including goldfish crackers and freeze pops, along with other special items, from Family Lives On. Benjamin will have his tradition fulfilled every year until he is 18. The tradition will remain the same, but as Benjamin gets older, he will likely adapt it to a more age appropriate version.
Family Lives On understands many of the challenges faced by families who have lost a parent and spouse. Our goal is to support healthy bereavement in children and teens by making it possible for them to continue to celebrate activities or traditions they used to share with their deceased parent. Traditions provide a safe context for grief and foster intra family connection and communication. Because the relationship never ends, your mom is forever your mom.
Family Lives On Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in Exton, PA that supports the lifelong emotional wellbeing of children whose mother or father has died. The free services of the Tradition Program are available to any child (3-18), anywhere in the United States, whose mother or father has died. To enroll in the program as a family in need, donate, volunteer or for more information visit the Family Lives On Foundation website or Facebook Page.