People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) and other disabilities are often excluded from rituals and information about death and loss because of the false assumption that they do not comprehend death or experience grief and loss. Just like people without disabilities, people with I/DD also experience the death of family members, pets, friends and support service staff. They, too, respond to loss and share the same reality of death as the absence of life. This workshop will help providers and families increase their knowledge about grief and loss experiences for individuals with I/DD, and their skills on guiding and supporting them through the process, while accounting for cultural differences.

Training Format/Duration: Classroom/1-3 hours

Target Populations: 

  • Counselors
  • Educators
  • Family members
  • Individuals with disabilities
  • Occupational therapists
  • Organizational leaders
  • Physical therapists
  • Psychologists
  • Social workers
  • Speech/language therapists
  • Students
  • Support and other school staff members

This workshop is designed to help you: 

  1. Gain knowledge about grief and loss experiences for people with and without developmental disabilities.
  2. Explore their own values and attitudes regarding grief and loss and people with I/DD and other disabilities.
  3. Discuss factors that facilitate or hinder emotional healing.
  4. Identify effective strategies for guiding and supporting individuals experiencing grief and loss, including individuals with I/DD and other disabilities.