In a press release, Mary Robinson, executive director of Imagine A Center for Coping With Loss, outlined the center's mission and future goals:
"Imagine is a new year-round grief support center for children, teens, parents and adults opening in Westfield this spring. The mission of Imagine is to support all those coping with loss and to foster resilience and emotional well-being for all those who grieve.
Founded by Mary Robinson, MA, CT, who is also the Founder of Good Grief in Morristown, with startup funding from The Thomas Glasser Foundation, Imagine will serve youth age 3-18 who are coping with loss due to the death of a parent or sibling. Parents and guardians participate in concurrent support groups.
In 2013 Imagine will expand to include support for families coping with terminal or chronic illness. All groups are facilitated by trained adult volunteers from the community. Imagine exists to provide support in a safe environment where children and teens acquire the tools they need to become more resilient and learn healthy ways to cope with difficult and painful feelings. The vision of Imagine is to create communities in which grief and trauma are transformed into resilience, empathy and compassion and where children coping with loss grow up emotionally healthy and able to lead meaningful and productive lives."
Robinson noted that the March training class is full, with 20 volunteers participating. Family orientations for support groups are also underway.
"Things are going beautifully and we are on track to open in April," she said.