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Learning how to grieve

KAPAA — Losing a loved one is a difficult experience and a feeling many are familiar with, especially when there isn’t a support system in place to grieve in a safe place.

While counseling and talking to another person is a possible avenue, not many people would consider talking to an animal for help in their time of need.

But Jeffrey Pears, a local bereavement care coordinator in Lihue, is offering help for those who want the opportunity to grieve and find closure this Saturday with a “Healing Horses Grief Support Field Trip.”

“Horses have the uncanny ability to intuit our emotions; recognize our comfort level; and respond to humans’ need for social interaction,” Pears said. “They sense our struggles and can help us become aware of how our actions or the actions of others affects our lives.”

Horses are non-threatening, gentle and loving toward humans, Pears said.

“Horses are most comfortable in a herd and humans are considered part of the herd, thus they are unconditionally accepted,” he said.

This is the third year that the Kauai Hospice is partnering with Healing Horses Kauai to offer this biannual field trip.

There is grooming, walking the horses around the lake while talking with others and interacting with the horses. Horse riding is not permitted, however. Two grief counselors and a number of horse handlers will be on site.

The field trip will take place at Healing Horses Kauai from 1 to 3 p.m.

Information and to register, call 245-7277.

For survivors of suicide grieving the loss of a loved one who died by suicide, the National Survivors of Suicide Day is being observed next week. The evening is an opportunity to find hope, healing, food, and friendship while connecting with others on a similar journey.

There will be free dinner, music, and a grief activity from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Liliuokalani Trust, 4530 Kali Road, Lihue.

The gathering is sponsored by Liliuokalani Trust, Life’s Bridges, and Kauai Hospice.

To RSVP: 245-1873

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