New York State Funeral Directors Association

Helping Parents and Families After the Death of a Child

05.19.2021 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm


Helping Parents and Families After the Death of a Child

This training is designed to provide an overview of the challenges that parents and families face following the death of a child, as well as a framework to best help and support parents and families.

Following the completion of this training, funeral directors will be able to:

  1. Identify the 6 characteristics/experiences common to child loss.
  2. Define "expert companionship" and identify at least 2-3 ways it can be used to support parents and families following the death of a child.
  3. Define posttraumatic growth and 3 ways that it occurs following the death of a child.
  4. Identify at least 2 unique issues related to the following causes of death: suicide, homicide, accidents, and miscarriages/newborn death/SIDS.
  5. Identify 2 ways that sibling grief is different from the grief of parents.
  6. Identify 3 ways that parents can help themselves and their surviving children after the death of their child/sibling.
  7. Understand the unique grief experience of parents who have lost their only child or all of their surviving children.
  8. Identify 5 things that will make it easier to speak with children about death.
  9. Identify 2-3 support group resources that can help families cope with the death of a child.

Note: There will be time allotted for Q&A prior to the end of the webinar.

David J. Roberts, LMSW, became a parent who experienced the death of a child, when his daughter Jeannine died of cancer on 3/1/03 at the age of 18. He is a retired addiction professional and an adjunct professor in the psychology and psychology-child life departments at Utica College. He is the chapter leader for The Compassionate Friends of the Mohawk Valley an organization dedicated to supporting families who have experienced the death of a child. Dave has also been a past keynote speaker and workshop presenter at national and regional grief conferences.

Mr. Roberts has been a past HuffPost contributor and has contributed other articles to Medium, Open to Hope Foundation, Mindfulness and Grief, Thrive Global, and the Recovering the Self Journal.

He has also appeared on numerous radio and internet broadcasts including the BBC podcast World Have Your Say, as well as Open to Hope Television. For further information about Dave and his work, please go to


Registration Coming Soon!

Preplan AprilMay 2021 Web small