Nelson’s Journey launches a new bereavement box initiative

Nelson's Journey Youth Panel with one of the comfort boxes and some of the items inside which can be

Nelson's Journey Youth Panel with one of the comfort boxes and some of the items inside which can be bought for bereaved children. From left, Yvonne Penvenne, 16; Aaron Lawton, 17; Danielle Piggin, 13; and Georgia Folkard, 17. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018

Bereavement charity Nelson's Journey has launched an initiative designed to bring comfort to young people who have lost a loved one.

Nelson's Journey Youth Panel with one of the comfort boxes which can be bought for bereaved children

Nelson's Journey Youth Panel with one of the comfort boxes which can be bought for bereaved children. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018

The Smiles & Tears Box was designed by members of the charity's youth panel, which is largely comprised of young volunteers who have experienced bereavement.

The box contains a variety of items carefully chosen by the panel and designed to support recipients through the grieving process.

The idea was inspired by the prevailing consensus that people don't know what to say to comfort bereaved young people. It is hoped that by gifting the Smiles and Tears Box, people can show support even if lost for words.

A spokesperson for the youth panel said: 'People don't always know what to say when someone has died and so we have designed this box of goodies for children and young people to use when they feel they need them.

Nelson's Journey Youth Panel with one of the comfort boxes and some of the items inside which can be

Nelson's Journey Youth Panel with one of the comfort boxes and some of the items inside which can be bought for bereaved children. From left, Yvonne Penvenne, 16; Aaron Lawton, 17; Danielle Piggin, 13; and front, Georgia Folkard, 17. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018


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'By receiving this gift, they will know that someone cares about them and it might help them feel less lonely too.'

Items inside the box include: a comforting soft toy, a journal for writing thoughts and feelings, a happy jar to store positive thoughts and memories, a stress ball for safely venting anger, a Gnaw chocolate bar and a fidget toy to keep hands active and the mind preoccupied.

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Youth panel member, Owen, said: 'Anyone can send them to a loved one who has gone through a bereavement. It's just a way of letting them know you're there.

'The box could really help bereaved children because it can be used in many different ways. You could use it on your own to reflect, or you could use it with your family. It's just really helpful overall, there's so much in it, there's almost anything you could use.'

Boxes have been made for three different age groups: under 7s, 8-12 years and 12-17 years.

The Smiles & Tears Box is £28 plus £4.99 postage and packaging and is available from the Nelson's Journey website

The charity was established in 1997 and provides therapeutic support for bereaved children and young people in Norfolk.

The Smiles and Tears Box follows on from the Smiles and Tears app, which was also designed by the youth panel and enables bereaved people seek support and save memories of a lost loved one.

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