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"I've found a community where I can truly open up"

The weekend of 18th May saw 40 bereaved siblings coming together in the

beautiful surroundings of Woodbrooke in Birmingham for The Compassionate Friends overnight retreat for brothers and sisters who had experienced the loss of a sibling early in their adult lives. There was some remarkable feedback from the weekend and we wanted to share some of this with you.

“I loved watching the groups bonding, sharing and caring for each other. There were of course many tears, but likewise laughter and hugging. In particular, I felt that many of the younger participants gelled together so well and shared their stories and supported one another in every way. It was so lovely to see”.

“This weekend I attended my second sibling bereavement retreat with The Compassionate Friends. It’s an amazing charity which offers support to bereaved families. I’ve met so many inspiring people through these events and they’ve helped me to deal with the loss of my brother and my grief.”

“I just wanted to say what a special weekend the sibling retreat was for me and to thank everyone who was there and a part of it. I know there are people who were at Woodbrooke who are not on Facebook but for those of you who do read this I want you to know you have helped me”.

I would highly recommend events like this to everyone who reads this and

might be thinking if doing something like this but has stopped themselves. I was hesitant and nervous but it soon went and I realised we are all dealing with our individual struggles but we should let others help - we can’t do this on our own!”

“I honestly think it [the retreat] is one of the best things I have done in terms of it helping me deal with my grief”.

“I found the weekend very helpful and therapeutic. There were many very sad stories but I felt much less alone being amongst other bereaved siblings. Thanks to everyone who organised it and volunteered their time and help before and during the weekend”.

"“Thank you so much to the team at TCF. I’ve always struggled to talk about my bereavement and for the first time in eight years I’ve found a community where I could truly open up. The staff and attendees were wonderful. I’ll definitely be coming back…”

“The photo of us all sitting on the grass was at the ‘closing circle’

where each person was invited to say something about the weekend if they wanted to and everybody did. … It was a truly special time where everyone said their thanks and goodbyes and there were many uplifting and positive comments. It was a very memorable and touching finale to a beautiful weekend”.

If you are interested in attending a future weekend for bereaved siblings (or for bereaved parents) let us know at info@tcf.org.uk or view future events here.

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Each year thousands of parents suffer the loss of a son or a daughter. Please help us to support families in their time of greatest need.

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