Fundraiser for grieving kids

LocoLanding Adventure Park and Lickity Split Ice Cream are hosting a fundraiser Sunday in support of counselling services for grieving children. 

Up until June 2018, Susan Kast ran a children’s grief counselling program at the Penticton Hospice. But when she left the hospice to work in private practice, the program folded.

With the program being the only one of its kind in the South Okanagan, a large void was left in the region. 

While the program was running through the hospice, Kast said LocoLanding would always host an end-of-season annual gathering for the kids and their families. 

Discussions then started earlier this year about reviving the group, and with a sponsorship from LocoLanding owner Diana Stirling, the children’s grief group began meeting monthly again in March.

Kast says she and some other volunteers have “made a commitment” to get the group meeting regularly again, “if that means volunteering my time — but I also know I have to make this sustainable.”

She said an anonymous volunteer recently stepped up to pay for the upcoming year’s rental fees for a meeting space at the art gallery. 

On Sunday, LocoLanding will open its doors with full proceeds between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. going to help pay for the counselling. Lickity Split Ice Cream will also be open from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. raising money for the cause. 

“These are vulnerable kids going through a really painful loss and the program I’m looking at running, it’s not a huge and costly program, but the impact it has on kids when we are looking at their long term wellness,” Kast said, is massive. 

She said they typically get around 10 children attending the monthly meetings. If you would like to get involved, contact [email protected]

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