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Bereavement Support

Download:  Black Ribbon Content | Rainbow Ribbon Content |


Highlander Counselling offers two ribbons for those in the bereavement process. The Black Ribbon is a modern-day version of the “black armband” which was commonly worn in British based cultures. The Black Ribbon is intended to be a modern death symbol.

The Black Ribbon  History

The Black Ribbon Programs were created by Leonard McEwen, MSW, RSW, as a result of a presentation made to the Stony Plain Rotary Club. The presentation was a result of a visit of his to the Center for Loss. The programs are intended to support persons who have experienced a loss and are encountering difficulty in dealing with their grief and mourning.

The inspiration for the pin came from a conversation between Len and Dr. Alan Wolfelt at Wolfelt’s Center for Loss in Ft. Collins, CO. Black Ribbons have now been sent around the world. They have been requested by hospice operators, physicians, cemeteries, funeral homes, family members and many others. They have helped communities heal after the loss of their young, helped individuals after the loss of family and friends.

The Rainbow Pin History

The Rainbow Pin is a new addition and is intended for those who are mourning the loss of a pet. Pet grief is usually disenfranchised. The pin gives the opportunity for people to voice their stories about the bond they shared with their pets and assist in telling the stories to these mourners.

Both Pins are accompanied by cards. The cards often have more significance than the pins in that the pins tend to be passed from mourner to mourner while the card is kept and treasured by the original recipient. The pin are offered free of charge in small quantities to mourners. Persons requesting larger quantities are asked to contribute to the cost of the pins and cards.