Submitted by Katie Kliner, MSW
BBH Grief and Loss Counselor

– – !

We began the day at our Big Bend Hospice office for Chick-fil-A breakfast. The teens were excited to look through their swag bags, provided by Shann Nichols of Branding Solutions LLC. The hoodies, provided by RaGZ were a huge hit! We boarded our bus, Tomahawk Transportation, over to The Retreat at Bradley’s Pond for our day of activities.

The morning at Bradley’s began with small groups where our wonderful facilitators led the teens in fun ice-breakers and encouraged them to share their stories of loss.

Next, campers had the choice between a “grief walk” or music therapy station with BBH’s own MT Sarah Osterhouse. During the grief walk, teens picked through a bag of questions to ask each other about their grief experience and the teens in music therapy learned about the Wave Model of Grief.

The second station included two choices as well: yoga or meditation. Yoga was led by BBH volunteer Kim Kenney, owner of Kim K Yoga. Kim led the teens through light stretching and mindful breathing techniques. Jeff Hanson of Absolute Equanimity ( led the teens in meditation practices they could bring home – one that included eating chocolate!

The teens enjoyed Publix subs for lunch and continued to foster connections with new friends. Perhaps the most popular exhibition of the day – TMH Animal Therapy – provided much-needed comfort with several lovable therapy dogs. Following the cute pooches, teens worked independently on new journals and had the option to make black-out poems, collages, or work through journal prompts.

To round out the day, BBH volunteer Sharron Pena of Flight of the Raptor came with her birds of prey to give an educational talk about the animals, which included a falcon, hawk, owl, and a snake!

A big thank you to the 27 BBH volunteers and employees who helped to make this day possible! If you would like to know more about how Big Bend Hospice helps grieving teens visit us at