A statewide free grief support walking group provides a safe space to create new friendships and share with others.

About Walking Through Grief:

The group is led and organised by experienced Palliate Care and Hospice volunteers in the North, North-West and Southern parts of Tasmania that meets regularly (weekly/fortnightly) to walk out in our beautiful Tasmanian landscape, providing a safe space to talk, create new friendships and share with others who understand.

Following the gentle 30min- 1hour walk, the group then meets at a café to enjoy a coffee and snack or picnic during the warmer months.

Why Walking Through Grief?

  • Grief is a unique experience and there is no timeline.
  • Isolation and loneliness may be very real, and sometimes people who have family and friends may still feel alone.
  • Walking is good for our physical and mental health and the program offers ‘gentle exercise’ in a safe and supportive group.
  • An opportunity to connect with others and form friendships with others who have had a similar experience.
  • A safe place to share feelings and emotions.
  • Beneficial time of positive focus during a time of sadness
  • An opportunity to normalise the grief experience.

Some experiences people have shared about the program:

“ I value sharing my grief experience”

“The support and care from the group is beneficial”

“I have found some new friendships and how to smile again”

How do I join the Group?

Self referral/ referral from a GP/health care professional or community group.

The Co-ordinator will arrange to meet with you to provide details about the program and discuss the roster or walks and a timeline for you to join.

What do I need to bring?

  • A hat, sunscreen and raincoat
  • A bottle of water
  • Comfortable wet and dry weather walking shoes
  • Any medications you may need

Who can join the group?

Anyone over the age of 18 years who has had a family member, friend or someone close to them die from a life limiting illness. The group os open to care givers and non-care givers of all relationships. As a guide, entry to the program is anytime from seven weeks after the person has died.

 How long can I stay with the group?

As a guide people are invited to remain with the group for up to 12 months. The co-ordinator will discuss with each person a reasonable timeline for leaving with considerations relative to each person’s situation.

Suggestions and referrals to other community groups are discussed for people to consider if required.

Do I need to be fit?

A basic level of fitness is required for the walks which is conducted at a gentle pace for up to 1 hour.

It is important to talk with your GP and let the organisers know if there is anything that may impact your ability to participate. Every consideration is given to individual people’s needs where possible.

If you think you may be unable to manage the walk, you are still welcome to join the group for coffee afterwards.

A note from the organisers:

As with any new experience, it may be challenging at first, however most people do begin to feel comfortable with the group after one or two walks. The volunteers are there to introduce new people and to help you feel welcome.

Contact your regions Co-ordinator for more information:

Northern Tasmania

SPCS Volunteer Support Service

Phone: 03 6777 4544

North-West Tasmania

Hospice Care Association

Phone: 03 6477 7747

Southern Tasmania

Hospice Volunteers South

Phone: 03 6231 9249

Other supports:

  • Access Mental Health Helpline provides a 24/7 free support, information, and referral line – 1800 332 388
  • Beyond Blue provides a 24/7 free and confidential support line – 1300 224 636
  • eheadspace provides a 9am -1am free and confidential support line – 1800 650 890.
  • FriendsLine provides a 24/7 free support for those feeling lonely and needs to reconnect and chat – 1800 424 287
  • Kids Helpline provides a 24/7 free support line for those 5-25 years of age – 1800 551 800
  • Lifeline provides 24-hour crisis counselling – 131 114
  • MensLine Australia provides a 24/7 free and confidential support line for Australian men – 1300 789 978

Information for this post has been sourced from the brochure below.

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