The Shared Grief Project envisions a world where no child grieves alone. To achieve this, we share the stories of individuals who have experienced a major loss at an early age and have gone on to live healthy, happy and successful lives.

Childhood bereavement is surprisingly common: 1 in 20 children in the U.S. will lose a parent before the age of 16, and the vast majority of children experience the death of a family member or friend by the time they complete high school. Children often struggle under grief’s burden, facing social, academic, behavioral, and psychological challenges in the aftermath of a loss.

Unfortunately, in our death-averse society, many grieving children suffer in isolation, with few opportunities to share their feelings and stories of grief. The difficult and complex emotions that they experience – including sadness, anger, loneliness, confusion, and guilt – remain unvoiced much of the time. As a result, grieving children and their families frequently do not receive the care and support from others that they need so acutely.

It is critically important for grieving children to know that they are not alone. Through the Shared Grief Project, we hope to communicate this message through the personal testaments of high-profile figures who can offer a sense of empathy, solidarity, and hope to grieving children and their families.

Our Team

Todd Arky

Todd Arky


Co-Founder

My father died when I was 12, and I am passionate about the need for resources to help kids deal with such a loss. I am an entrepreneur (co-founder of Seamless) who has a B.A. in History from the University of Michigan and J.D. from New York University School of Law.

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Jon Deren

Jon Deren


Co-Founder

For the past 15 years, JD has owned and operated Camp Manitou, one of the finest private camps in the country. Along with his wife, Sara, JD started Manitou Experience, an amazing bereavement camp for young boys who have experienced a significant death loss. JD has a B.S. from Tufts University and an M.B.A. from Columbia University.

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Roberto Clemente, Jr

Roberto Clemente, Jr.


Advisor

A former professional baseball player with the Philadelphia Phillies Organization, Roberto founded the Reviving Baseball in the Inner-Cities (RBI) program, aimed at helping at-risk youth through the sport in San Juan.

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Donna A. Gaffney


Advisor

Dr. Donna Gaffney (DNSc, PMHCNS-BC, FAAN) is the Advisor for Research and Content Development for the National Alliance for Grieving Children.  Previously, Donna was the Advisor for Education and Research at Project Rebirth in New York City, and a member of the faculty at the International Trauma Studies Program. She holds masters degrees from Columbia and Rutgers Universities and a doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania

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Scott Joachim


ADVISOR

I lost my parents within three weeks of each other at the age of 19.  What saved my life was music – playing guitar and piano, writing, and constantly listening to music that spoke to me and became a part of my spirituality.  I’m grateful for my family (a perfect wife and three incredible kids), a career I really love (I’m a tech-focused transactional lawyer) and my enduring optimism and passion.   My loss was beyond painful and took a long time to put into perspective, but I wake up every day grateful for another opportunity to get out there and enjoy life and make whatever impact I can.

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Our Sponsors

Our Partners

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The Moyer Foundation

The Moyer Foundation provides comfort, hope and healing to children affected by loss and family addiction. Founded in 2000 by World Series champion pitcher Jamie Moyer and his wife Karen, The Foundation created and supports two signature programs. Camp Erin® is the nation’s largest network of free bereavement camps for grieving children and teens ages 6 – 17. Camp Mariposa® is a free, first-of-its-kind program for children ages 9-12 impacted by a family member’s addiction.

For more information on The Moyer Foundation and its programs, please visit www.moyerfoundation.org.

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National Alliance for Grieving Children (NAGC)

The NAGC provides a network for nationwide communication between hundreds of professionals and volunteers who want to share ideas, information and resources with each other to better support the grieving children and families they serve in their own communities. Through this network, the NAGC offers online education, hosts an annual symposium on children’s grief, maintains a national database of children’s bereavement support programs and promotes national awareness to enhance public sensitivity to the issues impacting grieving children and teens.

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