We're thrilled to announce that Dougy Center recently received a $350,000 grant to be paid over the next two years from the Brave of Heart Fund. The Brave of Heart Fund was founded by the foundations of New York Life and Cigna and administered by charitable partner, E4E Relief. The grant will be used to develop and distribute resources for children, teens, as well as their parents and caregivers, who are grieving a death from COVID-19.
“It is estimated that about 65% of primary or secondary caregivers who have died of COVID-19 in the U.S. are from racially and ethnically minoritized communities,” said Brennan Wood, executive director of Dougy Center. “The materials we develop through this project will incorporate that reality into all aspects of content and design, including availability in Spanish.”

The Brave of Heart Fund was established in 2020 to provide charitable grants and emotional support services to families of the frontline healthcare workers, volunteers, and support staff whose lives were lost in the fight against COVID-19. It continues to offer support to these bereaved families via partnerships with non-profit organizations aligned with the fund's core purposes. To learn more, visit employeerelieffund.org/brave-of-heart-fund.

Childhood bereavement as a result of the pandemic is a public health emergency. Estimates show that more than 215,000 children in the U.S. and 5.2 million worldwide have had a parent or primary caregiver die of COVID-19. Dougy Center knows from the thousands of children and families who have walked through our doors that those who are newly bereaved will need continuing support and understanding. In addition to the death of a parent/caregiver, these children and teens have their grief compounded by pandemic lockdowns, physical distancing, and other restrictions that have impacted traditional ways of grieving in community.

Through the Brave of Heart Grant Fund, Dougy Center will add new tip sheets, activities, videos, podcast episodes, and activity books that focus specifically on grief after a death from COVID-19. Resources will be created in both English and Spanish and provided at no charge to families.

The first phase of new resources will be available later this year.