How to Talk to Kids about Traumatic Events

Tips for Parents and Schools.

Everyone, including adults, feel stressed during times of crisis and uncertainty. What can parents and teachers do? For most children, adults can provide adequate support in the following ways:

  1. Limit television and internet viewing. The media will provide useful information in the days ahead, but parents should monitor what is viewed to make sure that it is age appropriate. Also, parents should discuss with children what they view and give them an opportunity to ask questions.
  2. Acknowledge children’s feelings. Knowing what to say is often difficult. When no other words come to mind, a hug and saying, “this is really hard for you/us,” will work.
  • Keep adult issues from overwhelming children. Don’t let your children focus too much of their time or energy on this crisis.
  • Reassure children that they are safe and so are the important adults in their lives.
  • Maintain a normal routine and spend time with your children. This is important during any time of generalized stress and may continue to be so over the coming weeks if anxiety grows.
  • Let children know that it is okay to feel upset. Explain that all feelings are okay when a tragedy like this occurs. It is normal to feel sad or unsure when someone dies. It is also normal not to feel strongly about people you don’t know. Let children talk about their feelings and help put them into perspective.
  • Emphasize people’s resiliency. Focus on the children’s competencies in terms of their daily life.
  • Look for children at greater risk. Children who have had a past traumatic experience or personal loss, suffer from depression or other mental illness, or have special needs, may be at greater risk for severe reactions than others.
  • Observe children’s reactions to ongoing events. Provide opportunities and create an atmosphere in which children feel comfortable expressing their concerns and ideas and asking for help if they need it.

This information was obtained through the National Association of School Psychologists web site.



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A Message from Our CEO

Susan de Cuba

President and Chief Executive Officer

Few creatures inspire as much wonder as the hummingbird. Tiny, yet strong enough to migrate 500 miles across the Gulf of Mexico, this brilliant bird is the ultimate symbol of resilience. So it’s only fitting that we have incorporated a hummingbird into our new look and logo to symbolize our organization’s life-affirming mission.

Under the Treasure Coast Hospice name, we have grown our services beyond our cornerstone hospice program to include palliative care, grief support counseling and specialized pediatric care. To better reflect our expanded scope of community services, we have changed the name of our parent organization to Treasure Health, while our flagship hospice program will continue to be called Treasure Coast Hospice.

Hospice will always be the heart of our mission. The same outstanding care the community has known since 1982 will continue. The experience we’ve gained during the past 35 years translates well to other services that improve quality of life. Our full spectrum of support includes Treasure Coast Hospice, Treasure Health Palliative Care, Treasure Health Pediatric Care and Treasure Health Grief Support.

With all of our services, our goal is to empower patients and families with the knowledge and support they need to make every moment count.  Guiding our efforts is a caring community of health professionals, volunteers and donors. Like me, they believe that in all stages of illness, everyone deserves to experience the best possible quality of life.

With our comprehensive, compassionate approach to palliative care, hospice services and grief support, we are building communities that allow people to drive their own destinies for the highest quality of life in every health circumstance.

We are excited to embrace a fresh brand that helps us promote our life-affirming philosophy and look forward to having you join us as a trusted partner in supporting our community’s healthcare journey.

For more, see our spring newsletter
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Five Wishes ®

“Five Wishes ®” is an easy-to-use legal document written in everyday language to help you plan how you want to be cared for in case you become seriously ill. It is America’s most popular living will.

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Gift to your family: “Five Wishes ®” can help start and guide family conversations in advance of serious illness, so completing it is a gift to your family, friends and also your doctor. It keeps them out of the difficult position of having to guess what kinds of treatment you want or don’t want.

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To learn more about “Five Wishes ®”or to schedule a presentation for your group or community, please email Craig Perry  in Martin County or Tracey Kinsley in St. Lucie County.