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Hospice Family Care opens doors to haven for children dealing with heartbreak

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - The Caring House has been a dream of Hospice Family Care in Huntsville since 1995. The group found the perfect house five months ago. On Tuesday morning, the staff gave the community a first peak inside the home that is going to serve as a haven for our children who are grieving.

"Death does not discriminate, so it doesn't matter your age, race, color or creed," Business Development Manager Lee Shaw said.

Hospice Family Care wants to wipe away tears inside the Caring House. located on Longwood Drive.

"Children's grief is different," Shaw said. "They're often times known as 'the forgotten mourners,' because we are often dealing with our own grief ourselves when we've lost a loved on."

The Caring House is a physical representation of their childhood bereavement program that serves any child in the Huntsville/Madison community, ages 3-18, who has lost someone they love.

"Children's grief, it shows up in different ways, they recycle grief," Shaw said. "While they might not talk about their grief or have these feelings right after a death occurred, it could come back later."

Shaw cited statistics that show one in 20 children will lose a parent by the time they are 18 years old.

"So, that's about 4,000 kids in our community that will experience a loss," Shaw said.

Those children are the ones who the staff wants to find comfort in the home.

"This is a more nurturing environment," Hospice Family Care Board's Vice President Donna Palumbo said. "It's a more welcoming environment where they can just come in and relax."

The Huntsville Hospital Foundation members said the community, our community, opened the doors on the new facility.

"To think that we as the foundation, and with great thanks to the donors in this community and our friends in the community, can keep these doors open and provide the services to the children is just a wonderful testament to this community," Huntsville Hospital Foundation's President Candy Burnett said.

The Caring House offers support groups on Tuesday and Thursday nights. If your child could use some comfort, you can call their main line at (256)650-1212. Hospice Family Care also tends to 27 local schools in the community.