Brighter Days Family Grief Center Advocates for Children's Grief Awareness Day in Minnesota

Eden Prairie, MN – October 16, 2023Brighter Days Family Grief Center, a steadfast champion of the well-being of grieving children and their families, is thrilled to announce its initiative to bring Children’s Grief Awareness Day to the heart of Minnesota on November 16, 2023. 


The disheartening reality is that 1 in 15 Minnesota youth will encounter the loss of a parent or sibling by the age of 18. Behind this stark statistic are the poignant stories of young hearts carrying the burden of grief, and Brighter Days Family Grief Center is at the forefront, ensuring these stories are both heard and supported. 


This mission is deeply personal for Carolyn Kinzel, Founder and Executive Director of Brighter Days Family Grief Center. Her own son experienced the profound loss of his father at the tender age of 12, an experience that left him feeling isolated at school. Carolyn’s personal journey has fueled her unwavering commitment to ensure that no child in Minnesota navigates such a heart-wrenching experience alone. By introducing Children’s Grief Awareness Day to Minnesota, she aims to provide the community support and understanding that her own family desperately needed during their time of grief. 


In recognition of National Children’s Grief Awareness Month, which falls in November, Brighter Days Family Grief Center is making a dedicated effort to raise awareness and to support grieving children and their families throughout Minnesota. Kinzel states, “Children’s Grief Awareness Day is not just a date on the calendar; it represents hope, resilience, and the strength of community. This nationwide event raises awareness about the distinctive challenges faced by grieving children and their families, and Minnesota is now an integral part of this compassionate movement.” 


To affirm this commitment, Kinzel submitted an official proclamation, and Governor Walz endorsed it, officially designating every third Thursday in November as Children’s Grief Awareness Day. “This is more than just a signature; it is a promise. A promise from our government and community to create a nurturing and empathetic environment for those navigating grief. It’s a symbol of unity and care that ensures no child or family in Minnesota walks their grief journey alone,” Kinzel emphasized. 


With help from dozens of volunteers and partnering organizations within the Minnesota Children’s Grief Consortium, Brighter Days Family Grief Center is preparing a statewide campaign throughout November with a special focus on November 16. The objective is to initiate a ripple effect of compassion that touches every corner of Minnesota. 


Here’s how you can make a profound difference NOW: 


  • Order a free Children’s Grief Awareness Day yard sign to show your support and spread the word throughout your neighborhoods and businesses. 
  • Donate to Brighter Days Family Grief Center to help sustain their life changing youth programs—all contributions will be matched up to $25,000 through November 16. 
  • Visit Brighter Days website to learn about additional resources and events celebrating Children’s Grief Awareness throughout the month of November.
  • Download the official proclamation and display in your schools, businesses, and community organizations. Encourage everyone to WEAR BLUE on November 16.  
  • Stop by Brighter Days between 10/16-11/16 to write your message for grieving children on their hope board, then watch for their social media posts!  
By participating in these activities, you can become a meaningful part of creating a more compassionate and understanding community for Minnesota grieving children and their families.  
About Brighter Days Family Grief Center: Brighter Days Family Grief Center is more than an organization; it’s a beacon of hope. Brighter Days Family Grief Center focuses on bringing families back together after the death or terminal diagnosis of a loved one by addressing the many psychosocial and logistical needs of each family member. Trusted by Minnesota hospitals, hospices, schools, and community partners since 2017, Brighter Days has served over 8,000 individuals and granted more than $77,000 in financial assistance. 

Additional Resources and Ways to Support Grieving Children and Families:

Request your FREE yard sign HERE. We will contact you when it is ready for pick-up/delivery. THANK YOU for being a part of the movement!  

To learn more about children’s grief, please check out our national partners for events and resources.  

Visit our GiveMN page to support our beautiful mission! Thanks to two generous family foundations, all donations will be matched dollar for dollar up to $25,000! 

Bryan Piatt, mental health advocate and former Kare 11 anchor, talks about Children's Grief Awareness Day!