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"I did the unthinkable..." Overnight retreat for bereaved siblings

"I did the unthinkable... I walked into a room full of strangers and left with lots of hugs and tears and great memories. Thank you so much for the retreat, I didn't realise how much I needed it" (S)

The weekend of 21/22 April saw 30 bereaved siblings gather together for The Compassionate Friends overnight retreat at Woodbrooke in Birmingham. We have had lots of wonderful feedback from the bereaved brothers and sisters who came to the retreat to be together, share their stories and find understanding and hope after the loss of sibling early in life. Often called 'the forgotten mourners', this weekend was a unique opportunity for these bereaved siblings to find support and speak with others who have experienced a similar traumatic loss.
We are hugely grateful to the Big Lottery Fund for funding the weekend and to the volunteers - bereaved siblings themselves - for organising this special supportive event.

Here's just some of the feedback we have received from the siblings that attended:

" This weekend has changed me as a person. I’ve met some of the bravest and most inspiring people I’ll ever meet. The people who understand the pain and heartbreak of losing a sibling, who are there to listen as well as share their sibling’s stories. These people I hope to continue to call friends. I can’t explain how amazing it is to talk to other people who have been through the same experience and won’t judge you because they understand everything you are saying". (G)

"I found the weekend so helpful and peaceful, and actually felt comfortable and safe at the retreat. I felt like I finally fit in somewhere. " (K)

"Such a supportive environment & group of people - got so much out of it - first time I felt able to be myself and open up in a long while without feeling judged...." (S)

"It was so helpful to be amongst everyone and have all the spaces for listening and sharing with each other. I got much more from it than I thought I would - lots of time to think about where I really am on this journey and a chance to feel much more myself. " (J)

"A weekend full of support for one another, a time for sharing and listening. I will take away so much from the 2 days" (J)

I just want to say that how much this weekend retreat meant to me. It came at a time when I really needed to speak to people who 'got it' and I couldn't have asked for a better bunch of people to share this with. Listening to you all was a real privilege and now that I'm home I feel quite emotional that it's over. Thank you everyone and thanks to TCF for organising an amazing event". (C)

Thank you for such an emotional and intense but uplifting and brilliant weekend. I’m so happy I came and met some incredible people." (H)

Find out more - read a fuller report about the retreat here.

The next supportive retreat for adult bereaved siblings will by on 18-19 May 2019. More details to follow in the Events section of this website.

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