2019 Fall Conference- Purchase CEs


Alex Cares Scholarship

AC for Grieving Youth New copy    2019 NAGC Symposium

Call for Applications:
Alex Cares invites applications from graduate students interested in providing support to bereaved youth for the 2019 Scholarship Program.

Alex Cares for Grieving Youth® (youthresilience.org) provides support, education and advocacy for grieving youth and communities across the United States. We have a demonstrated commitment to diversity, inclusion and equity, especially along lines of race and gender. Scholarship recipients will be a guest of Alex Cares from June 19 to June 22, 2019 at the NAGC’s Annual Symposium on Childhood Grief in Salt Lake City, Utah.

A round-trip airline ticket (economy fare, up to $500), conference registration, and three nights hotel to be provided. This two and one-half day educational conference runs from Thursday, June 20 to mid-day Saturday, June 22. Applicant must be a graduate student and working or volunteering with bereaved youth in some capacity.

Scholarship funds will require the following documentation and funds will be dispersed as follows:

(1) a copy of flight information and credit card receipt - required for reimbursement prior to conference.

(2) a copy of conference registration /including all course selections prior to airline reimbursement.

(3) a copy of room receipt - to be paid for by NAGC on last day of the conference upon receipt of all scholarship recipient's evaluations.

Scholarship recipient is required to sign in and out each day.

Applications for scholarships will be accepted through April 19, 2019
Decisions will be announced on or by May 10, 2019.

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Monthly Webinars

Monthly Webinars
Join us at one of our live, interactive monthly webinars to learn about current topics, issues, or trends in children’s grief, connect with colleagues, and get some questions answered. Free for members, including continuing education credit for MFTs, counselors, psychologists, and social workers. Webinars last 90 minutes.

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Annual Symposium

Annual Symposium
The NAGC Annual Symposium is the longest running, most comprehensive conference dedicated to childhood bereavement in the US. It attracts hundreds of professionals who exchange information and clinical expertise, announce new findings, highlight innovative programs, share perspectives, and collaborate on ways to advance the field.

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Live Fall Webcast

Live Fall Webcast
Partner with the NAGC during Children's Grief Awareness Month and host a live webcast viewing event on the topic of childhood grief in your community. Make it a free event or a fundraiser! Customizeable e-flyer to be provided by the NAGC for your event. CE's are available for participants for an additional fee.

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Professional Training & Education

The National Alliance for Grieving Children (NAGC) equips bereavement professionals, children’s health professionals and volunteers who work with grieving children with the most effective strategies and tools to better serve their communities and train their staff and constituents.  When it comes to continuing education, we work diligently with our partners to discover and communicate new developments and research advances specific to our field and the well being of grieving children.

From mental health counselors to pediatric health care providers, the issues surrounding childhood bereavement are often not addressed in academic programs and credentialing preparation.  Professionals that do not interact with bereaved children on a daily basis require accurate information and resources to enhance their ability to provide proper care for a grieving child. As a result, we’ve made educating and training the vast children’s health community representing a number of professions (i.e., social workers, counselors, physicians, etc.) a top priority.

2019 Symposium Keynote & Plenary Speakers

Dan ClarkOpening Keynote:
Dan Clark

DAN CLARK is founder and CEO of Dan Clark and Associates - an international high performance communications and training firm;  University Professor;  an Award Winning Athlete who fought his way back from a paralyzing injury that cut short his football career;  a New York Times Best Selling Author;  Adventurer;  Gold Record Songwriter/Recording Artist;  and one of the most sought after speakers on the platform today - delivering customized, cutting edge keynote speeches and transformational programs on leadership, building winning teams, relationship selling, and creating a culture of excellence to entry level employees, emerging leaders, and seasoned executives.

Since 1982, Dan has spoken to more than 5 million people, in over 5500 audiences, in all 50 states, in 60 countries, on 6 continents, to clients including 200 of the Fortune 500 companies, Nobel Laureates and world leaders gathered at the ‘Festival of Thinkers’ in Abu Dhabi, NASA, Super Bowl Champions, Million Dollar Round Table, the United Nations World Congress, and to our combat troops in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, throughout Europe, Korea, Latin America and Africa.

In 2005, Dan was inducted into the National Speakers Hall of Fame, and both Achievers Global and eSpeakers have named Dan one of the Top Ten Speakers in the World.

Dan is a primary contributing author to the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, and the author of 31 of his own best-selling books, including Puppies for Sale, which was made into a film at Paramount Studios starring Jack Lemmon.

As a master storyteller, Dan has been published in more than 50 million books, in 40 languages worldwide, has appeared on more than 500 TV and radio programs including Oprah and Glenn Beck, and has been the feature article in Mayo Clinic, Entrepreneur, Performance, and Millionaire Magazines.

Clark’s inspiring life includes soaring to the edge of space in a U2 Spy Plane; flying fighter jets with the Air Force Thunderbirds; racing automobiles at Nürburgring and dogsleds in the Arctic; serving on the Olympic Committee and carrying the Olympic Torch in the 2002 Winter Games; serving on the International Board of Governors of Operation Smile; and serving with the Secretary of the Air Force on her National Civic Leaders Board, where Dan has received the United States Distinguished Service Medal and the American Spirit Award – the highest awards given by the Department of the Air Force to a civilian. Most significant, in 2012, Dan was named Utah Father of the year.

Justin Yopp Picture to useFriday Plenary:
Justin Yopp, PhD

Justin M. Yopp, PhD, is a clinical psychologist and Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  Dr. Yopp directs the pediatric psycho-oncology consultation service at the N.C. Cancer Hospital where he also specializes in working with patients with advanced cancer who have children at home.

In 2010, Dr. Yopp and his colleague at UNC started a support group for widowed fathers who had lost their wife/partner and were raising grieving children at home.  This effort led to the creation of the Widowed Parent Program.  At this time, the program offers support groups for both mothers and fathers, conducts research to learn how to best serve grieving families, has published numerous academic manuscripts, and runs a website resource for widowed parents as well as the counselors and health professionals who support them: www.widowedparent.org.

Last year, Dr. Yopp and his colleague published a book with Oxford University Press, entitled The Group: Seven Widowed Fathers Reimagine Life.  This eminently readable book weaves in contemporary thinking on grief, adaptation, resiliency, and post-traumatic growth with the deeply compelling story of the seven men from the first support group.  The authors partnered with the fathers to write the book and are donating all proceeds back to the Widowed Parent Program.  Since it's publication, The Group has been featured on the Today Show, NPR, People, and Time magazine.

Prior to joining the faculty at UNC, Dr. Yopp worked at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.

Allison Gilbert Author Photo webClosing Plenary:
Allison Gilbert

Allison Gilbert is an Emmy award-winning journalist and one of the most thought-provoking and influential writers on grief and resilience. The author of numerous books including the groundbreaking, Passed and Present: Keeping Memories of Loved Ones Aliveher stirring work exposes the secret and essential factor for harnessing loss to drive happiness, spark creativity, and rebound from adversity.

Allison’s other books include, Parentless Parents: How the Loss of Our Mothers and Fathers Impacts the Way We Raise Our Children and Always Too Soon: Voices of Support for Those Who Have Lost Both Parents.

She is also co-editor of Covering Catastrophe: Broadcast Journalists Report September 11, the definitive historical record of how broadcast journalists covered that tragic day. The landmark book was turned into a documentary by the U.S. State Department and distributed to embassies and consulates around the world.

Allison is the official narrator of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum’s primary audio tour and her voice is introduced by Robert De Niro on the Museum’s “Witnessing History” tour, the only female journalist to be so honored.

Allison started her career in TV news, covering most every major news story in the last 20 years — including 9/11, when she was on the job and nearly killed by falling debris. At CNN, Allison connected broadcast and digital audiences by producing high-profile TV segments and writing stories for CNN.com. Before CNN, she was a special projects producer at WABC-TV and an investigative producer at WNBC-TV, both in New York. She was also part of the original launch teams for New York 1 News and MSNBC. Allison currently serves as Senior Advisor to Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors, the preeminent national organization providing grief support to families of America’s fallen heroes.

Allison graduated from Georgetown University and lives outside New York City. She and her husband have a son and daughter – a college freshman and an 11th grader. You can learn more about her here: www.allisongilbert.com.


2018 Fall Conference and Webcast

Purchase the Playback

For Children's Grief Awareness Month, the National Alliance for Grieving Children will again host a Fall Conference & Webcast on Children's Grief.  This year's webcast is entitled "Supporting Youth and Schools After a Community Tragedy". This popular event will feature thought leaders from the field of childhood bereavement who appeal to a diverse audience, including, funeral service, hospice care, health care, education, mental health, child welfare, and bereavement support professionals.

Hosting a LIVE Webcast viewing event is an easy and affordable way to:
- Educate Your Community
- Offer Innovative Training to Staff, Volunteers and/or Board Members
- Enhance your local relationships by inviting social workers, local funeral professionals,hospice care workers, educators, and mental health professionals.
- Make it a Free Event or a Fundraiser! You decide to charge a fee or not.

$150.00 - General Rate/Non-members
$125.00 - NAGC members
Want to offer CEs at your viewing event? Additional +$50.00 Administrative fee per site, plus $25.00 per person for NAGC to offer 3.0 CEs through a CEU sponsor. Continuing Education is available for: Psychologists, Counselors, MFT’s & Social Workers
Additional information on Continuing Education 

Registration for sites to offer CEs ends November 1st

Our local host Good Grief invites you to join us as part of the local audience for the National Alliance for Grieving Children Fall Conference which will stream live from the Black Box Theatre at Princeton High School, Princeton, NJ.
For information and to register for the live event, please click HERE.

Webcast Schedule: The webcast will take place on Thursday, November 8, 2018.
The webcast begins at 11:30am ET/10:30am CT/9:30am MT/8:30am PT
The webcast ends at 3:30PM ET/2:30PM CT/1:30PM MT/12:30PT

11:30am-11:45am: Welcome
11:45am-12:45pm: Session 1 (1hr)
12:45pm- 1:00pm: 15 min Break
1:00pm -2:00pm: Session 2 (1hrs)
2:00pm- 2:15pm: 15 min Break
2:15pm-3:15pm: Session 3 (1hrs)
3:15pm-3:20pm Farewell
3:20pm-3:30pm: 10 min break
3:30pm-4:30pm: Optional On-Site Discussion

10:30am-10:45am: Welcome
10:45am-11:45am: Session 1 (1hr)
11:45pm- 12:00pm: 15 min Break
12:00pm -1:00pm: Session 2 (1hrs)
1:00pm- 1:15pm: 15 min Break
1:15pm-2:15pm: Session 3 (1hrs)
2:15pm-2:20pm Farewell
2:20pm-2:30pm: 10 min break
2:30pm-3:30pm: Optional On-Site Discussion

9:30am-9:45am: Welcome
9:45am-10:45am: Session 1 (1hr)
10:45pm- 11:00am: 15 min Break
11:00am -12:00pm: Session 2 (1hrs)
12:00pm- 12:15pm: 15 min Break
12:15pm-1:15pm: Session 3 (1hrs)
1:15pm-1:20pm Farewell
1:20pm-1:30pm: 10 min break
1:30pm-2:30pm: Optional On-Site Discussion

8:30am-8:45am: Welcome
8:45am-9:45am: Session 1 (1hr)
9:45pm- 10:00am: 15 min Break
10:00am -11:00am: Session 2 (1hrs)
11:00am- 11:15am: 15 min Break
11:15am-12:15am: Session 3 (1hrs)
12:15am-12:20pm Farewell
12:20pm-12:30pm: 10 min break
12:30pm-1:30pm: Optional On-Site Discussion

The webcast will stream live from Princeton, NJ. A local audience is to be provided by the NAGC’s local host Good Grief (good-grief.org).
Please email with any questions regarding hosting your event.

Supporting Youth and Schools After a Community Tragedy 

Death, dying, and bereavement are unfortunate themes that appear almost daily in news headlines. Rarely is there any discussion on a national level as to how community tragedy impacts the lives of children and teenagers. This webcast will provide insight into the challenges faced by children and teenagers impacted by a community tragedy. Our presenters will provide practical information and advice for supporting children and teenagers in the aftermath of a tragedy. They will share information about how to talk to children about tragedy, how to engage the community, and ways to offer support throughout the grieving process.

Session & Speaker Information

Session I: “Lessons Learned to Promote Positive Outcomes when Responding to Traumatic Events”
Presented by: Donna L. Schuurman, Ed.D.Donna Schuurman 800 x 1200

Drawing on her experience with community responses to both U.S. and international large-scale disasters, Dr.Schuurman will share “lessons observed” following human-initiated and natural disasters. Effective, outreach following high profile events involving deaths, like school shootings, earthquakes, as well as ongoing social crises like the opioid addiction epidemic, requires planning and coordination. In this talk she will weave professional experience with research findings on what to include or consider when assisting people in communities impacted by high-profile tragic events.

Learning Objectives: Upon completion of this talk, participants will be able to:

1. Identify five factors to promote positive outcomes when responding to traumatic events.
2. Describe six key principles of a trauma-informed approach to large-scale disasters.
3. Practically apply factors and principles to community-based organizations and/or programs for effective response to community disasters.

About Donna L. Schuurman, Ed.D.

Donna Schuurman is Sr. Director of Advocacy & Training at The Dougy Center for Grieving Children & Families, where she has served since 1986. She writes and trains internationally on bereavement issues, and authored Never the Same: Coming to Terms with the Death of a Parent. Dr. Schuurman is a member of the International Work Group on Death, Dying, and Bereavement, and a founding board member of The NAGC. She has trained the NTSB and FBI’s Rapid Deployment teams, as well as medical personnel, NGO staff and caregivers following major disasters around the world. She believes grief is inherently complicated.


Session II: “Supporting Students and Staff in the Aftermath of Crisis”
Presented by: David J Schonfeld, MD
David Schonfeld Copy
School and community crises have the potential to cause short- and long-term effects on the psychological functioning, emotional adjustment, health, and developmental trajectory of students. School professionals play a vital role in providing important support to students. This support promotes their understanding of the event, helps them learn coping strategies to accelerate adjustment and minimize their distress, and minimizes maladaptive coping mechanisms and behavioral difficulties. The presentation will provide practical suggestions on how to identify common adjustment difficulties in children in the aftermath of a crisis and to promote effective coping strategies to mitigate the impact of the crisis. The presenter, David J Schonfeld, MD, established and directs the National Center for School Crisis and Bereavement at the University of Southern California. Drawing from more than 30 years’ experience responding to school and community crisis events, Dr. Schonfeld will provide examples and answer questions from participants and will highlight free resources for supporting children, families and professionals in the aftermath of crisis and loss.

Learning Objectives: Upon completion of this talk, participants will be able to:

1. Understand the importance of psychological first aid and basic supportive services to promoting adjustment after a crisis
2. Outline the common symptoms of adjustment reactions in children and adolescents that may occur in response to a crisis and implications for providing ethical and sound support.
3. Describe the timeline for adjustment for children after a crisis event.
4. Know how to access free resources related to school crisis response and bereavement from the National Center for School Crisis and Bereavement (www.schoolcrisiscenter.org) and the Coalition to Support Grieving Students (www.grievingstudents.org)

About David J Schonfeld, MD
David J Schonfeld, MD is a developmental-behavioral pediatrician and director of the National Center for School Crisis and Bereavement (NCSCB). He holds a joint appointment at the Keck School of Medicine of USC. In 2005, Schonfeld established the NCSCB with funding from the September 11th Children’s Fund and the National Philanthropic Trust. Further funding from the New York Life Foundation has allowed the center to provide ongoing and expanded services. The center aims to promote an appreciation of the role that schools play to support students, staff and families at times of crisis and loss; to collaborate with organizations and agencies to further this goal; and to serve as a resource for information, training materials, consultation and technical assistance. Schonfeld has authored more than 100 scholarly articles, book chapters and books (e.g., The Grieving Student: A Teacher’s Guide, Brookes Publishing) and has given more than 800 presentations on the topics of pediatric bereavement and crisis. He has provided consultation and training on school crisis and pediatric bereavement in the aftermath of a number of school crisis events and disasters within the United States and abroad, including school and community shootings in Newtown, Connecticut; Marysville, Washington; Aurora, Colorado, Chardon, Ohio; and Townville, South Carolina; flooding from hurricanes Sandy in New York and New Jersey, Katrina in New Orleans, and Ike in Galveston, Texas; 2008 earthquake in Sichuan, China; tornadoes in Joplin, Missouri and Alabama; and Great Smoky Mountain wildfires in Sevierville, Tennessee. He has also conducted school-based research (funded by NICHD, NIMH, NIDA, the Maternal and Child Health Bureau, William T. Grant Foundation and other foundations) involving children’s understanding of and adjustment to serious illness and death, as well as school-based interventions to promote adjustment and risk prevention. Schonfeld is a member the American Academy of Pediatrics Disaster Preparedness Advisory Council, serving as commissioner for both the National Commission on Children and Disasters as well as the Sandy Hook Advisory Commission in Connecticut. He was president of the Society for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics from 2006 to 2007.


Session III: “Partnering with Schools to Support Grieving Students”
Presented by: Meghan Szafran, MS, CT and Kevin Carter, MSW, LCSW

Partnering with schools to support grieving students comes with its own challenges. Building strong relationships, responding to logistical challenges, and implementing an effective curriculum with fidelity while remaining flexible are key aspects of a successful school-based grief support program. Through five years of lessons learned, The Center for Grieving Children in Philadelphia has built an innovative and sought-after grief support program which is implemented in over 100 schools each year. We will discuss lessons learned from our hands-on experiences, the ways we meet our students’ cultural and emotional needs, and how we have expanded our services to meet the training and crisis response needs of our schools.

Learning Objectives: Upon completion of this talk, participants will be able to:

1. Understand how grief can manifest in the school setting and how to ethically and effectively support grieving students.
2. Cultivate school partnerships and effectively equip stakeholders to respond to students' social, developmental and cultural needs related to grief.
3. Identify key activities and theories that are part of in-school grief groups and an in-school crisis response.
4. Discuss lessons learned from The Center for Grieving Children's implementation of school-based grief groups.

About Meghan Szafran, MS, CT  photo meghan 002

Meghan Szafran, MS, CT has an extensive and varied background working with children and families, specializing in addiction, trauma, and grief. She has worked to implement evidence-based programming in school and community settings, training school professionals in evidence-based violence prevention models, and coordinating with community stakeholders to promote resiliency with youth and families. She spent over ten years providing group and individual counseling to adolescents and their families impacted by drug and alcohol addiction and trauma as the Lead Clinical Therapist and the Director of Prevention Services at TODAY, Inc., before making her way to The Center for Grieving Children in Philadelphia. She has been with The Center since January 2015 and serves as the Director of School & Community Services where she oversees and facilitates school and community grief groups for youth 5-22, provides bereavement training to caregivers and professionals, and post-crisis support to schools. She has presented at the Greater Philadelphia Trauma Conference and the at the National Alliance for Grieving Children annual conference and has earned her Certificate in Thanatology from the Association for Death Education and Counseling. Meghan received her undergraduate degree in Health & Human Services from Virginia Wesleyan College and her Master of Science in Counseling Psychology with a certificate in Trauma Studies from Chestnut Hill College. She is currently pursuing state licensure as a Professional Counselor and is passionate about her work in ensuring that no child grieves alone.

Kevin Website EditedKevin R. Carter, MSW, LCSW currently serves as the Clinical Director for The Center for Grieving Children.  Prior to the current position Kevin practiced in a variety of settings as a clinician, administrator and educator in community mental health, residential care for adolescents, hospice child/teen bereavement and served as a field director in social work education.  His primary interests are in grief/loss/trauma and in particular how these issues impact children, youth and families and in particular, the African American community. 

American Psychological Association

CE Learning Systems, LLC is approved by American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. CE Learning Systems maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

Association of Social Work Boards

CE Learning Systems (Provider #1020) is approved as a provider for social work continuing education by the Association of State Social Work Boards (ASWB) www.aswb.org, through the Approved Continuing Education ACE program. CE Learning Systems LLC maintains responsibility for the program. ASWB Approval Period: 02/23/2016 – 02/23/2019. Social workers should contact their regulatory board to determine course approval. Social workers participating in this course will receive up to 3 continuing education clock hours.

National Board for Certified Counselors

CE Learning Systems and National Alliance for Grieving Children (NAGC) are cosponsors of this program. The cosponsorship has been approved by NBCC. CE Learning Systems is an NBCC Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 5951. The ACEP solely is responsible for this program, including the awarding of NBCC credit.

New York State Education Department's State Board for Social Work

CE Learning Systems SW CPE is recognized by the New York State Education Department's State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #0060.

New York Education Department Board of Creative Arts Therapy

CE Learning Systems (d/b/a CE-credit.com), is recognized by the New York State Education Department's State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed creative arts therapists. #CAT-0008

New York Education Department for Licensed Mental Health Counselors

CE Learning Systems, LLC is recognized by the New York State Education Department's State Board for Mental Health Practitioners as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed mental health counselors. #MHC-0072.

Special Thanks

Special Thanks to the organizations and individuals who have made this event possible:
NYLF RGB hi res VITAS Healthcare

Additional Thanks to:
Good Grief (Princeton, NJ)