When a child dies, grief can devastate a family. Bereaved Families is an organization in Ontario whose primary mandate is to provide support services to families who have lost children. It was initiated in 1978 by four bereaved mothers as a self-help, mutual aid program under the auspices of the Chaplaincy Department of the Hospital for Sick Children. Their mutual support of one another grew to welcome and include others who were also experiencing this life shattering experience. In July 1984, the organization became a provincial body made possible by a grant from the Trillium Foundation.
Now, Bereaved Families of Ontario has affiliate chapters across the province, all working to help grieving families cope with the deaths that have forever changed their lives. Durham Region became an affiliate in October 1993. With an Executive Director and a strong team of volunteers, BFO-Durham provides support services, public awareness and volunteer training in the Durham Region.