Volunteer Spotlight

Volunteer Spotlight Barnard Mthembu

I had the opportunity to talk with Barnard about volunteering with Tu Nidito and what drew him to our organization. Barnard is studying to become a social worker because he is committed to helping people who are struggling. His focus is on clinical therapy and supporting families. 

“I couldn’t think of a better place to do my internship than Tu Nidito,” he shared after his experience here. “I want to be part of their journey and healing. Humans are so unique and deal with their trauma in different ways.”

Barnard views Tu Nidito kids as courageous. He found it rewarding to see how strong they are and how willing they are to come to Tu Nidito and ask for help. “I am inspired and encouraged by the kids.” He believes he is a bridge between caregivers and kids, both can come to Tu Nidito and get the support they need. Caregivers have someone to be with, to share and to be heard, while their kids are in a safe space.

Volunteering with Tu Nidito gave Barnard the chance to look kids in the eye and earnestly say, “I see you, I am here with you, I want to know how you are doing.” 

Barnard will be an impactful social worker; his compassion and empathy shine when he speaks about his work and his love of volunteering with Tu Nidito. Barnard and his wife, a resident at Banner University Hospital, are expecting their first child this year. Barnard will complete his degree and pursue clinical practice.  Barnard, thank you for sharing your time, your talent, your wisdom and heart with all of us at Tu Nidito.

The Remarkable Celebration 2023 Wrap Up


The Remarkable Celebration is Tu Nidito’s largest fundraising event, raising critical funds for our programs and services that serve more than 700 grieving youth each year. This year’s event raised more than $230,000, thanks to the generosity of individuals like you.

The Remarkable Celebration honored five Remarkable Moms, who through their life experiences advance Tu Nidito’s mission of creating a community of acceptance and understanding for those grieving a serious medical condition or death.

This year’s honorees were: Laura Baker, Linda Hardy, Ann Lovell, Sylvia Quigley and Laurie Nelson Wetterschneider.  These women are pillars of strength and resilience for their children and our community.


Laura Baker

Linda Hardy

Ann Lovell

Sylvia Quigley

Laurie Nelson Wetterschneider

Thank You Sponsors!

Mamma Mia! Presenting Sponsor

Dancing Queen Sponsor

Jim & Vicki Click

Take A Chance on Me Sponsors

SOS Sponsors

Larry Wetterschneider

Super Trouper Sponsors

Kind Words from Logan

Logan Lazarus is the grandson of Ellen, one of our longtime volunteers and a former remarkable mom, and he nominated Tu Nidito for a funding opportunity from his high school. While Tu Nidito was not chosen for the grant, Logan’s speech was very moving, and we very much appreciate his kind words and effort.

“Hi everyone! I’m Logan Lazarus and I’m very happy to be here. The charity I chose is called Tu Nidito – an incredible organization based here in Tucson. 

My grandma has been volunteering with this charity for many years and has even been given one of Tu Nidito’s highest honors – the remarkable mom award. What this organization does is extremely special, very unique, and fulfills a true need here in our community – helping ensure that anyone who is suffering or grieving is not alone.

When my grandmother was only 10 years old, she lost her father very suddenly to a heart attack. This traumatic event really affected her and took a huge toll on her and her family, especially because she was so young. Years later my grandma also lost her husband very suddenly – my grandpa who I never met and am named after. My mother was still in college and his death impacted the whole family in such a major way. 

Tu Nidito has helped hundreds of families with their mission: That no child grieves alone. The grieving process is extremely difficult to overcome in any situation, but even harder when it’s sudden or traumatic. Tu Nidito provides a nest – a support system to help families during these unimaginable times. With amazing people on hand to help and programs designed to guide everyone through the grieving process, Tu Nudito is a safe, loving place where children, teens, young adults, and families can find comfort, hope, and support while they are grieving the diagnosis of a serious medical condition or the death of a loved one. 

Thanks to my Grandma I already knew how much this organization extremely benefits children in our community, but I visited Tu Nidito earlier this week wanting to learn more about this great organization. And my visit was truly impactful as I learned even more about how they help people who are suffering or grieving. 

At Tu Nidito, they offer various programs to help every person deal with grief in the way that’s right for them. Programs are twice a week and are usually organized by age, with multiple volunteers assigned per group. When I visited I got to see all the amenities they offer and amazing features that Tu Nidito has. The building has many different rooms designed for all ages and tailored for different things depending on the person in need. For each program, the time is separated into two halves – some play time and some time to talk and connect with the children. 

Most times, it is hard for little children to comprehend the death of a loved one and even harder for them to communicate what they’re feeling. So Tu Nudito created a room specifically for children ranging from 3-7 years old. In this room, Tu Nidito provides games and toys for the children to just have a safe space to relax and even play out their grief. Volunteers may use books and characters from a story to help children understand and process their feelings. 

The middle room is for children ages 8-12 who spend time in the Talking Circle. This room also has an evening curriculum focusing on teaching new skills for coping and gaining a better understanding of the thoughts and emotions these kids are experiencing. 

There is also a Teen room for kids ages 13-18. Teens have specific needs and these programs help grieving teenagers form friendships with others who are going through something similar. Tu Nudito helps provide these teens with a sense of safety and acceptance during what can be an isolating experience for an adolescent. 

Tu Nidito also has other special rooms used for specific programs such as the Volcano Room, Imagination Room, and Art Room. The Volcano Room is very helpful for the children because when emotions build up and need to erupt, kids can spend time in the Volcano Room to blow off steam. In some situations, their special person has been murdered or has committed suicide and that can be extremely hard for anyone to overcome. The Volcano room allows the kids through physical movement and activity, to release complex feelings like anger, stress, frustration, and anxiety.

In the Imagination room and the Art Room, kids grieve more through behavior than words. Children can continue to process what they are feeling through imaginative play, drawing, or dressing up while knowing it is okay to still be a kid and have hope for their future. They can play out their grief in creative, therapeutic ways and know that Tu Nidito is a safe place. 

Tu Nidito provides a truly unique service to Southern Arizona and their organization is extremely impactful for all the children who need a safe nest where they can openly grieve and express their emotions. Like any non-profit, they have a variety of needs, but all the money raised would directly support their ability to keep the rooms, equipment, volunteers and facilities at Tu Nidito going and growing so they can help more families and children. Tu Nidito runs 100 percent off of donations so this would help them in a major way. 

Tu Nidito is such an amazing charity with such an impact on the families going through the most difficult times imaginable. You should vote for this incredible organization because its impact on children and families going through the most unimaginable times is so great. Through peer-to-peer interaction, guided discussion and age appropriate activities, families find comfort, hope, and support so that no child has to grieve alone.”

Mary Wallace “Arms Wide Open”

Volunteer Spotlight:
Mary Wallace “Arms Wide Open”

By Debbie Rich

Have you ever felt someone’s energy through a phone call? It is rare for me, but when I spoke with our Tu Nidito volunteer, Mary Wallace, I felt her energy – and her warmth, compassion and sense of humor.  Mary came to Tucson after having lived 30 years in Los Angeles as a television reporter, producer, director and writer. Her work took her on travels around the country, meeting real life people and sharing their stories through segments and series on HBO, NBC and PBS.  She loved her work and shared “I had fun almost every day.”

Mary came to grief work after having her best friend die from breast cancer. Although she had experienced grief before, the death of this friend moved her to explore grief support groups in her area. She landed at one in at Glendale Adventist Hospital. During her 8 months with the group she grew into the role of facilitator.  She found grief work extremely fulfilling and helped to start a group for adults grieving a death by suicide. 

Fast forward to Mary’s retirement to Tucson. She found Tu Nidito after exploring volunteer opportunities to work with those grieving. She shared, “while at Tu Nidito’s one night, I spotted someone who was so familiar to me and I asked if she had attended a grief support group at Adventist Hospital in Glendale?”  She had! This person was Tu Nidito’s Support Specialist (now Bereavement Programs Manager) Serena Sahajian.  Mary was so happy to see Serena and shared that it gave her the strength to go forward through the world with her arms wide open. 

Mary values Tu Nidito’s grief support programs because they are experiential and not just rhetoric. She found her heart with the Middles and shared, “I love the Middles because they are ages 8-12 and so am I. It is a high honor to walk with these kids and it means so much to be with them – to giggle with them and cry with them.” Completing her thought with, “we cry because there isn’t a definitive answer.” Mary ended the conversation with, “in many ways my heart would sometimes miss a beat without Tu Nidito.”

Mary is enjoying her retirement. She fills her time with art of all kinds. Once a year she finds herself in the small town of Dillion Montana fly fishing, which is her passion. She has only missed one season in the last 20 years. She describes her time there as spiritual “there is so much room for me there and we have a million laughs together as we fish the clear fresh waters.”

Mary is a Tu Nidito treasure. Her energy is effusive. Her passion and compassion are contagious. It was an honor to learn her story and to share it with all of you. 

Tu Nidito Takes Grief and Loss Support Group Training on the Road

Grief and Loss Support Training in Vail

In response to a critical community need addressing the record cases of grief and loss due to the pandemic and resulting deaths from the virus and ripple effect of increased suicide and homicide deaths, Tu Nidito has developed a comprehensive training for school staff and a companion structured 8-week Grief group curriculum.

Amanda Marks MSW, Community Impact Director, describes the need for grief and loss training in the school setting, “The pandemic has drawn attention to grief and loss and how kids are grieving at school. Grief doesn’t have an on off switch, kids are bringing their grief to school. As Southern AZ’s grief and loss experts, Tu Nidito is available to help school personnel better support students during their grief journey. She continued, “one of our core values is – we respond – the pilot training helps us respond to our community’s unmet needs.  Equipping school staff with the tools and skills to facilitate a grief and loss group at their school increases a student’s accessibility to peer grief support, thereby helping to ensure that no one (student?) grieves alone”.

Tu Nidito completed the first pilot program for the Vail Unified School District, training 30 school counselors and student service coordinators, on the Tu Nidito model and how to implement best practices when facilitating a support group at their schools. The curriculum includes discussion topics and activities that focus on identifying and expressing emotions, developing coping strategies while at the same time decreasing feelings of isolation and building connections with other students.

Jill Wells, Family Resource Coordinator for the Vail School District, brought the training to the district and participated, she shared, “thank you for all the great information, I loved that you included reminders on how to talk and what to say, and that it takes practice and we should all be practicing.” Her team gave the training great praise saying they want more.

“We are inspired by the Vail Scholl District’s response to our Grief and Loss group training program,” said Liz McCusker, Executive Director, Tu Nidito. “We know the more we provide support, resources and education to our community the closer we come to our vision – No child grieves alone.”

Our partners at NPR dive deeper into the impact of grief and loss post pandemic:

Losing a parent in childhood is the kind of trauma that can change the trajectory of kids’ lives, putting them at risk of having symptoms of anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress and even poor educational outcomes. Yet few schools have resources in place to help kids going through this. The problem has come into sharp relief during the COVID-19 crisis, which left more than 200,000 kids newly bereft of a parent or primary grandparent caregiver, according to some estimates.

Read the article here

Making a Referral

Making a Referral

How to Get Started in Tu Nidito’s Programs

Tu Nidito provides comfort, hope and support to grieving children, teens, families and young adults through an array of programs. A family or individual can get plugged into whichever services are most suitable for their unique needs by completing a referral form online – or by having a professional complete a referral on their behalf. Services (offered at no cost, in English and Spanish) include:

  • Peer-to-peer support groups for children and teens 3.5 – 18 and their caregivers grieving the death of a loved one
  • Peer-to-peer support groups for young adults 18 – 39 grieving the death of a loved one
  • One-on-one support for children, teens and families experiencing a serious medical diagnosis of a family member
  • Peer-to-peer support groups for children and teens 3.5 – 18 and their caregivers experiencing the serious medical diagnosis of a parent/caregiver

Self Referral

If you or your family are grieving the death of a loved one or a serious medical diagnosis, we invite you to complete the Self Referral Form online, or give us a call at (520) 322-9155. Completion of this form does not immediately enroll you in a program, but it is the first step to get you connected with a trained Support Specialist on staff.

Professional Referral

Teachers, medical professionals, counselors, pastors, therapists and social workers often meet or serve families or individuals who may benefit from Tu Nidito’s services. If this describes you, we invite you to complete the Professional Referral Form online or give us a call at (520) 322-9155. We will connect with you if we have any further questions about the family or individual you are referring, then reach out to them directly to introduce ourselves. Please note that you must have permission from the party you are referring prior to completing the Professional Referral Form

Lesser Known Resources

Lesser Known Resources

Tu Nidito Services You May Not Know About

Tu Nidito provides one-on-one and group support programs for children and families grieving the death of a loved one or a serious medical diagnosis, but did you know that we have several additional programs too? Together, this array of services help ensure that no child grieves alone in Southern Arizona. To learn more about each of these offerings, reach out to us by email ([email protected]), online or by calling 520-322-9155.

Community Library

The Tu Nidito Community Library is a free resource available to anyone in our community! We have hundreds of grief-specific books in English and Spanish. The collection covers a range of topics and types of losses, and is organized by audience. Whether you’re looking for a book that explains a serious medical diagnosis to a child, or equips an adult with coping skills following a death loss, the Community Library has something for you!

Reach out today to schedule a time to check out a book in person. Our staff team is happy to help you find the right book for your unique needs.


Grief Tip Brochure

The Childhood Grief brochure was developed by Tu Nidito in 2021 with support from TMC Foundation. It includes helpful tips for supporting children grieving a serious medical condition or the death of a loved one. In practical ways, this resource answers the questions, “What are common characteristics of grief?” and “How can I help a child navigate their grief?”

If you, your family, or your staff team might find this brochure useful, contact us to pick up a bundle or have one mailed to you.

Referral Resources

At Tu Nidito, we recognize that we aren’t the only organization in Southern Arizona providing valuable tools and resources to the community! That is why we provide referral services by phone to anyone seeking:

  • General information about the grief process
  • Details about Tu Nidito’s grief support programs
  • Support resources outside Tu Nidito
  • Contacts for local counselors, therapists and more

Experienced professionals on staff are available to answer inquiries regarding grief and loss of any kind. Calls are answered promptly or returned within 24 business hours.

Grief Education

Tu Nidito’s Grief Education Workshop is for schools and community agencies who desire education regarding how best to support the social-emotional needs of children and teens as they navigate life’s many losses and changes, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. Grief support, not just bereavement support, is needed now more than ever. This workshop is designed to provide tips and resources to help adults who work closely with the youth in our community learn how to be present and supportive to grieving children and teens. It is available in either on-site or via video conferencing.


Tu Nidito’s Grief Education sessions can be scheduled online or by contacting Tu Nidito at 520-322-9155.

As a reminder, we have several resources available here on our website, including a digital resource library with reading recommendations and relevant articles. Also, the Tu Nidito Blog is home to monthly program updates and educational materials.

A Friend Like You

A Friend Like You

A sing-a-long about the importance of having community

A Friend Like You

Right now, the world seems to be remembering the importance of community. Through community, we create connection and through those connections we find comfort, hope, and support. For over 25 years, Tu Nidito has been an integral part of supporting Tucson as the only agency in Southern Arizona providing support to children, families and young adults who are grieving the death of a loved one or the diagnosis of a serious medical condition. Through our mission, Tu Nidito has its own very special community.

The generosity of our Tu Nidito community helps grieving children thrive as we march towards fulfilling our vision: that no child grieves alone. From support group facilitators to members of the Board of Directors; faithful donors to Remarkable Mom honorees . . . Each of you are considered friends of Tu Nidito and we are humbled to be connected and united with you under one mission.

A dear friend of Tu Nidito is Bruce Phillips. For many years Bruce has been bringing comfort and joy to Tu Nidito through his love for music. With just one strum of his guitar, our hearts feel lighter and full of love. Bruce’s version of the song Friend Like U by Geoff Moore is a great way to express our mutual connection to Tu Nidito’s mission. We need each other and there is no way we would all make it alone!  It’s so good to know Tu Nidito has friends like each and every one of you.

Now more than ever, we see how important it is to stay connected to friends, family, and yourself as you may be navigating a unique journey through grief. If you haven’t already, visit the following posts on our blog. They’ll provide you with tools and activities to find a sense of community and connectedness in the midst of grief, even from home:

Un amigo como tu

Ahorita, el mundo parece estar recordando la importancia de la comunidad. Por medio de la comunidad, creamos conexiones y mediante estas conexiones encontramos confort, esperanza y apoyo. Por mas de 25 años, Tu Nidito a sido parte integral de apoyo a Tucson al ser la única agencia en el sur de Arizona que provee apoyo a niños, familias y jóvenes adultos que están pasando por duelo de la muerte de un ser querido o el diagnostico de una enfermedad seria. Por nuestra misión, Tu Nidito tiene su misma comunidad espectacular. 

La generosidad de nuestra comunidad de Tu Nidito ayuda a niños afligidos a prosperar mientras marchamos para cumplir con nuestra misión: Ningún niño sufre solo. Desde nuestros facilitadores de grupo, miembros de nuestra Mesa Directivadonadores leales hasta Madres Remarcables homenajeadas…. Cada uno de ustedes es considerado amigo de Tu Nidito y nos sentimos honrados de estar conectados y unidos con ustedes bajo una misma misión.

Un muy querido amigo de Tu Nidito es Bruce Phillips. Por muchos años Bruce ha traído alegría y confort a nosotros por su amor de música. Con solo un rasgar de su guitarra, nuestros corazones se sienten iluminados y llenos de amor. La versión de Bruce de la canción Friend Like U de Geoff Moore es una manera especial de expresar nuestra conexión mutual a la misión de Tu Nidito. Nos necesitamos los unos a los otros, no hay manera de hacer esto solos. Se siente tan bien saber que Tu Nidito tiene amigos como cada uno de ustedes. Gracias.

Ahora mas que nunca, podemos ver la importancia de mantener conexiones con amigos, familia, y tu mismo cuando estás navegando una pérdida. Si aún no lo has hecho, visita las siguientes publicaciones en nuestro blog. Te darán técnicas y actividades para encontrar un sentido de comunidad y conexión en medio del dolor, incluso desde casa:

Be Kind Challenge

Be Kind Challenge

Online curriculum for children and families impacted by grief

If you have questions or would like guidance around this curriculum, contact us! We are still available by phone and email. Leave us a message and we will get back to you promptly.

(520) 322-9155 | [email protected]

Topic: Acts of Kindness

We can be our own worst critics sometimes, especially when we are grieving a special person’s serious medical condition or a death loss. When we are harsh on ourselves, self-compassion and kindness are nowhere to be found. During this present time, a time when life feels turned upside-down, it can feel very easy to justify diving head-first into the deep end of our grief and staying there. But if we take a quick moment to hold our heads above water, we see that kindness is still here. It’s written in chalk on the sidewalk by the families who live down the street. It’s friends, family and neighbors checking in on each other, asking what we need if we can’t leave our homes. It’s showing a re-run of the University of Arizona Men’s basketball team winning the NCAA National Championship in 1997 to make us cheer and remember what it’s like to feel a sense of togetherness. And once we see that external kindness, we can remind ourselves that we deserve similar, internal self-compassion. We can tell ourselves, “It’s ok that I stayed in my pajamas today; I’m grieving. “It’s ok that I cried for an hour this afternoon; I’m grieving.” “It’s ok that I’m irritated by every little thing today; I’m grieving.” Remember, our grief is not an excuse for our thoughts, emotions, and actions. It is, however, grace we can give ourselves as we remember to show ourselves compassion.

The Be Kind Challenge

This week, Tu Nidito officially accepted a challenge from Ben’s Bells Project to participate in the “Be Kind Challenge.” We want YOU to join us! The “Be Kind Challenge” paper chain activity can be done by anyone and from anywhere. It is a motivator that helps us practice intentional kindness to those around us and ourselves! Here’s how it works:

Supplies Needed:

  • Strips of paper for chain links – print online here or make your own!
  • Tape or a Stapler
  • Pens or markers


  1. Download and print the “be kind challenge” chain links HERE so you can track your acts of kindness. Or, make your own by cutting an 5×11” piece of paper into 1”- 2” strips.
  2. Place blank chain links in an accessible location along with pens/markers and tape or a stapler.
  3. Practice and recognize intentional kindness! This can be something you do for yourself or others. Whether it’s running an errand for a neighbor, or showing compassion for yourself when you’re experiencing big emotions, record your acts of kindness throughout the day on the pre-cut strips, looping them together as a chain.
  4. At the end of each day, look at how your family’s chain has grown and reflect on the importance of each act of kindness completed. Display your chain for all to see.

Share your project with others:

Post photo updates of your kindness chain on Facebook! Tag Tu Nidito and Ben’s Bells Project, and use the hashtag #BeKindChallenge to share your acts of kindness with the world. You can challenge your friends and family to complete the #BeKindChallenge with you! Then, when we get through this season together, we will gather in one big celebration of community kindness to join our chains— imagine the chain we will create together!

Make your paper-chain using different colors!
Write notes in chalk for your neighbors!

Everyone can participate in this challenge! Here are some fun tips and ideas for the whole family to be kind together:

As a family, think of something kind you can do for your neighbors! Write kind notes and place them in mailboxes. Place drawings and encouraging signs in your windows for friends to see as they pass by your house.

Littles (3 ½ – 7), draw pictures that put a smile on your face! If they make you smile, they will definitely make others smile too!

Middles (8 – 12), write kindness notes to each person in your family. As they read the notes and you see them smile, you will probably feel pretty good too! Is there something you can do around the house to help someone else? Pick up toys? Tidy up a room?

Teens (13 – 18), keep in touch with your friends through text, phone calls or video-chat. Laugh with them and hang out, even if you can’t be in the same room. Write affirmations (feel-good notes) to yourself and your family members each day to remind all of you how wonderful you are.

Adults, write love notes to your kids and hide them in special or silly places. Write affirmations to yourself. Remember, you deserve just as much love and kindness as your kids.

We’d love to see what you’re doing to practice intentional acts of kindness!

Share your paper-chain creation with us by sending a picture of your artwork to [email protected]! And remember, we are available for support at (520) 322-9155.

Si tiene preguntas o necesita guía o apoyo, nos puede contactar a Tu Nidito al 520-322-9155 | [email protected].

Tema: Actos de amabilidad

A veces, podemos ser nuestros peores críticos. Especialmente cuando estamos afligidos por la
condición seria de una persona especial, o una muerte. Cuando somos duros con nosotros
mismos, la autocompasión y amabilidad no se pueden encontrar. Durante este tiempo, cuando la vida se siente al revés, puede ser muy fácil justificar irnos hasta lo más profundo de nuestro duelo y mantenernos ahí. Pero si tomamos un momento para mantener la cabeza en alto, podremos ver que la amabilidad, esta ahí. Está escrita con gis en la banqueta de una familia que vive al final de la calle. Son amigos, familia y vecinos que se cuidan a sí mismos, preguntando si necesitan algo si no pueden dejar su casa. Es pasar en la televisión al Equipo de Basquetbol de la Universidad de Arizona cuando ganaron el Campeonato del NCAA en 1997 para hacernos sentir un momento de unión. Una vez que vemos esa amabilidad en el exterior, podemos recordarnos a nosotros mismo que podemos cuidar de nosotros también. Podemos decirnos “Esta bien si me quedo en pijamas todo el día, estoy en duelo” “Está bien que llore por una hora esta tarde, estoy de duelo” “Está bien que cada cosita me molesta hoy, estoy en duelo”. Recuerda, nuestro duelo no es una excusa para nuestros pensamientos, emociones o acciones. Es, sin embargo, gracia que podemos darnos a nosotros mismos para recordarnos ser amables con nosotros mismos.

El Reto de Ser Amable (The Be Kind Challenge)

Esta semana, Tu Nidito oficialmente acepto el reto de Ben’s Bells Projects para participar en el reto de ser amable. Queremos que TU, te nos unas! La actividad para el reto de ser amables puede hacerse por todos, en todos lados. Es un motivador que nos ayudara a practicar actos de amabilidad intencional a aquellos alrededor de nosotros y nosotros mismos! Aquí es como funciona:

Materiales necesarios:

  • Tiras de papel para formar la cadena – imprime aquí o crea las tuyas!
  • Tape o engrapadora
  • Plumas o marcadores


  1. Descarga e imprime los eslabones de cadena del “Reto de ser amables” AQUI para que puedas documentar tus actos de amabilidad. O Puedes hacer los tuyos cortando una hoja de papel 8.5 X 11 en tiras de 1-2 pulgadas
  2. Pon los eslabones en blanco en una parte accesible junto con plumas/marcadores y tape/engrapadora.
  3. Practica y reconoce amabilidad intencional! Puede ser algo que hagas para ti mismo o alguien. Ya sea hacer un mandado para un vecino, o hacer algo por ti que te guste hacer cuando tienes muchas emociones. Documenta tus actos de amabilidad durante el día y conecta los eslabones, como una cadena.
  4. Al final del día, vean como la cadena de su familia ha crecido y reflexionen en la importancia de cada acto de amabilidad que completaron.

Comparte su proyecto con otros:

¡Pongan fotos de actualizaciones de sus cadenas en facebook! Etiqueten a Tu Nidito y Ben’s Bells Project y usen la hashtag #BeKindChallenge para compartir sus actos de amabilidad con el mundo. Rete a su familia y amigos a completar el #BeKindChallenge con ustedes. ¡Después, cuando pase esta temporada, nos juntaremos a una gran celebración de amabilidad y juntaremos nuestras cadenas- Imaginen la gran cadena que crearemos juntos!

Use papel de muchos colores
Escriba notas con tiza por sus vecinos

¡Todos pueden participar en este reto! Aquí hay algunas ideas que pueden hacer como familia para ser amables juntos:

¡Como familia, piensen que pueden hacer por sus vecinos! Pueden escribir notas y ponerlas en sus buzones. Pueden hacer dibujos o palabras alentadoras y ponerlas en su ventana para que sus amigos los vean cuando pasen por su casa.

Pequeños (3 ½ – 7), Hagan dibujos que les pongan una sonrisa en su cara! Si te hacen sonreír, de seguro harán sonreír a otros.

Medianos (8 – 12), Escribe notas de amabilidad para cada persona en tu familia. ¡Cuando lean las notas y los veas sonreir, eso te hara sentir bien! ¿Hay algo que puedas hacer en la casa para ayudar a alguien? Recoger juguetes? Limpiar un cuarto?

Adolescentes (13 – 18), Mantente en contacto con tus amigos por medio de texto, llamadas o video-llamadas. Ríete con ellos, aunque no estén en el mismo cuarto. Escribe afirmaciones (notas que te hagan sentir bien) para ti y tu familia cada día para recordarles lo maravillosos que son.

Adultos, Escribe notas de amor para tus hijos y escóndelas en lugares especiales o curiosos. Escribe afirmaciones sobre ti. Recuerda, tu mereces igual o más, la cantidad de amabilidad.

¡Nos encantaría ver sus actos de amabilidad!

Comparte con nosotros mandando una fotografía de tu arte a [email protected]! Y recuerda, estamos disponibles para apoyarte al (520) 322-9155.

Caring for the Niche: Tu Nidito’s Young Adult Bereavement Support Group

Caring for the Niche:

Tu Nidito’s Young Adult Bereavement Support Group

This is Serena Sahajian. In 2013, Serena’s mother died after fighting brain cancer for 9 months. A film student at the time and in the wake of her grief, she sought services at the University of Arizona’s Counseling and Psych Services center (CAPS). Her therapist referred her to Tu Nidito’s Young Adult Bereavement Support Group. With much hesitation, Serena called Tu Nidito and, for the first time, told a complete stranger that her mother died. She recalls being received with gentleness and warmth. The Young Adult Bereavement Support Group is a safe space for young adults ages 18-29 to receive support, care, and comfort after experiencing the death of a loved one. It is a welcoming environment where young adults can share stories, engage and connect with others, learn healthy coping skills, and ultimately find hope and support through their grief journey. The group meets twice monthly near the University of Arizona campus. It was within this new community that Serena found the comfort and support she needed as she navigated the challenges of grief.

Years later, Serena decided it was time to give back to the community that had given so much to her. After considering her progress along her grief journey, she felt prepared to do so. Since then, Serena has gone from Tu Nidito volunteer, to part-time staff, to her current position as a full-time Support Specialist. Her role now includes the task of facilitating the Young Adult Bereavement Support Group. As fate would have it, Serena has come “full-circle,” guiding the group that she became a part of years prior.

Serena explains that young adults can become particularly lonely and isolated in their grief. “Bereaved young adults are a niche in our society who are all too easy to overlook; They’ve often moved away from home and have yet to form attachments in a new community,” she notes. Their support system may be weak and inadequate. Therefore, this particular support group fills a genuine need here in Tucson.

But, what if a young adult isn’t able to attend a formal support group? Those individuals are welcome to join us for Tu Nidito’s Gathering for The Grieving. Bereaved young adults can come have a casual meal or simply share space with fellow grievers. There will be no pressure to share explicitly about their grief at the event. This series will begin in the Summer of 2020 and occur quarterly.

Serena wants young adults who may consider joining the support group or attending a future Gathering to know that there is a space for them. They don’t have to be “okay,” and other people will understand that because they’re not okay either. The stigma surrounding the expression of grief in our culture is, in a word, exhausting. It’s tiresome to hold in your thoughts and to feel as if you can’t be open about what you’re experiencing. That is why this work is so essential. It’s the “profound moments” that keep Serena going; When someone shares their death loss with the group for the first time, or sheds tears in the company of understanding friends; When someone poses a fear that they face and everyone else nods in agreement, as if saying, “I feel that, too.” It is our hope here at Tu Nidito that the profound moments will continue, especially as we expand our reach into the community to ensure that no child, no family, and no young adult grieves alone.

For more information regarding the Young Adult Bereavement Support Group or the upcoming Gathering for The Grieving series, contact Serena at [email protected] or call (520) 322-9155.


Pictured above are family photos provided by Serena. In the first, Serena is pictured with her mother Julie, holding a small puppy together. The second is a photo of Julie looking out into the ocean, holding Serena’s brother in her arms when he was a baby.