Our History

Ongoing Commitment

We have an ongoing commitment to the health of the community, especially its children.

The Children’s Room (TCR) provides grief support services for families and children up to age 19 in its Arlington center as well as in schools and community organizations in the Greater Boston area. Services include peer support groups; a “Parenting While Grieving” educational series; individualized consultations for adults; teen-specific programming; monthly family activity nights; and information and referral services.

TCR was founded by an impassioned group of caregivers who, in 1993, received training from the renowned Oregon-based Dougy Center for Grieving Children. Calling themselves “The Children’s Room,” because they occupied just a single room for their work, they provided services for families dealing with catastrophic loss as a program of Hospice West in Waltham, Massachusetts. By 1995, they embarked on the work of making The Children’s Room an independent, incorporated 501(C)(3).

In April 1999, The Children’s Room opened with eight experienced volunteers serving seven families out of a church basement. Today, The Children’s Room offers services at its center in Arlington, a warm and inviting Victorian house, and at organizations such as Boys & Girls Clubs. Families are referred by teachers, mental health counselors, pediatricians, hospice workers, funeral directors, social workers, and families and volunteers who are or have been a part of our programs. To expand our reach and make grief support services more widely available, we train professionals in social services, education, and healthcare settings with the tools they need to support grieving children and families. We also train graduate and undergraduate students through a rigorous internship program, in order to educate the next generation of professionals entering the fields of mental health counseling, expressive therapies, and social work.