“Next Door Neighbor” Honors NWU

Mourning Hope, a grief support center for young people who have lost loved ones, honored Nebraska Wesleyan University with its Partners in Hope award in a February ceremony.

Upon receiving the award on behalf of the university, Rosemary Ohles, wife of President Fred Ohles, said, “Mourning Hope, being our neighbor, focusing on the needs of youth, knowing how to put college students into action as volunteers, is an ideal partner for Nebraska Wesleyan. We are pleased to provide a comfortable and supportive environment for Mourning Hope’s programs in a house owned by NWU. We are proud of the volunteers among our students, professors, staff members, alumni and members of the Board of Governors engaged in helping Mourning Hope to be a model of caring for youth who have experienced loss.”

Seven Things You Can Do for a Grieving Friend

Do you know someone who’s lost someone? Are you afraid of saying the wrong thing? Here’s Mourning Hope’s advice for helping a friend through her grief.

1. Listen patiently. That may mean hearing the same stories again and again. But memories live through those stories. They’ll help her heal.

2. Don’t judge. People deal with their emotions differently. If she feels pressure to bottle them up because you’re uncomfortable with them, that’s not helpful.

3. Don’t fix it. It’s natural to want to make things better. But recognize you can’t take her pain away.

4. Be practical. “Can I mow your yard?” is better than, “Let me know how I can help.”

5. Be there. Attend the funeral if you can. Then keep being there. Quick visits, calls and notes help her know you’re not going anywhere.

6. Say his name. She hasn’t forgotten him. Knowing that you haven’t either can mean a lot.

7. Remember holidays. Special events can emphasize his absence. Showing that you recognize that can help.