Support Groups

Having specialized groups at every stage of the loss journey is a key part of our mission. Our groups are designed so that you can access what resonates most for you in this current season of your life. What resonates now may change as your journey does. No matter where you are on the loss journey, there is a group support option for you.

Please note: all groups are FREE to attend and are affirming and trauma informed spaces. Partners are encouraged to join all groups.

Initial Grief

Our initial grief groups are designed to help you process grief. You are welcome to attend these groups in the early days of loss as well as come back to them during the days and months when your grief is heavier to carry. These groups are all professionally facilitated and peer-driven.

TFMR Support Groups

These groups are designed to support the unique journeys of families who have experienced loss through Termination for Medical Reasons (T.F.M.R). In this category, you will find a 6-week professionally facilitated group and a peer drop-in group.

Trying to Conceive

Our Trying to Conceive groups are designed to support you as you decide to try, or are actively trying to conceive after previous loss or fertility challenges. These groups are for those who are naturally trying to conceive or are trying to conceive through assisted fertility. You do not have to have experienced previous pregnancy infant loss to join.

Pregnant After Loss

Our Pregnant After Loss groups are for those who are currently pregnant after a previous loss. In this category, you will find a monthly group to support you as you navigate this new pregnancy.

Parenting Living Children Through Loss

Our Parenting Living Children Through Loss groups are for those with living children either before or after loss. There are two group options to choose from: Parenting Living Children Through Loss (formerly called “Grieving with living children”) and Parenting a Baby After Loss (formerly called “parent & baby”) group.

Childless Not by choice

These groups are a space for individuals and parents who do not have any living children, to connect with other parents and honour their unique parenting journey.

Partners in Loss

Our Partners in Loss groups are specifically for partners who are navigating loss. Partners deserve to be supported through loss and we are honoured to offer this space. Please note that partners are welcome to join all other groups. In this category, you will find two groups: Partners in Loss group and 2SLGBTQIA+ Parenting and Loss group

SIDS/SUDC Category

These groups are for families who have lost a child to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) or Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood (SUDC).

Inclusive Groups

These groups are designed to support the diversity of communities that experience loss. In this category, you will find groups such as the South Asian Loss Group, 2SLGBTQIA+ Parenting and Loss Group, Post-Abortion Group.

Specialized Groups

In this category you will find professionally facilitated groups such as Art and Equine therapy.

Social Connection Groups

These groups are social connection groups. They are not support groups, they are groups that allow for connection in a social setting. In this category, you will find two groups: Social Connections for Adults Only and Social Connections, Family Friendly groups.

FAQ

What to expect at a PILSC peer support group

A hybrid group is a peer support group that gives you the option of attending in person at the PILSC office in downtown Calgary or attending virtually on Zoom for those living outside of Calgary and for anyone who prefers to attend virtually.

Your hybrid group will have a designated facilitator for those who attend in person and the second facilitator will be supporting the group on Zoom. We have technology called Meeting Owl that allows for a seamless interaction experience between those attending in person and those who attend virtually.

(PILSC hybrid group using Meeting Owl technology with in-person and virtual attendees)

To see a video of a Hybrid group, see this video

For our 8 Week Groups, we require that all participants attend either the first or second session and as many sessions as possible to allow for a safe and consistent group environment. That being said, life happens and let us know if you are unable to attend a session by emailing info@pilsc.org.

As with all of our services at PILSC, we believe in the importance of removing barriers to accessing services. All of our groups are offered at no cost to participants. For those who have the means and ability to help support the centre and our groups programming, we graciously accept donations: https://pilsc.org/donate-to-pilsc

All of our online groups are open for anyone to attend anywhere in the world. Our groups that meet in person will always have a hybrid option so you can always attend any group virtually, regardless of your physical location.

You will receive a confirmation email from the Jane booking system and the day before your group you will receive an email welcoming you to your group. For 8 week groups, there are forms to fill out in the Jane booking system so please fill those out as we require your mailing information to send you materials for your group.

Yes, you are welcome to attend a group more than once. Every time you attend will be different because so much is determined by the people in a group with you. We also have various monthly groups that you can try after an 8-week group to meet others who have experienced.

Book with Erin Winters

In order to book with Erin, please connect directly with our Program Assistant, Shelagh via email at shelagh@pilsc.org

NOTE: Refrain from providing detailed personal information when emailing Shelagh. Feel free to describe your challenges in brief, and leave out personal details that you only wish to share with Erin.

Shelagh

Shelagh (she/her) brings with her a solid background as an admin in a variety of areas from business, academia and now with a charitable organization with the Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support Center. She feels passionate about working in a role that benefits others in the community.

Shelagh was exposed to bereavement and deep grief at an early age and it left her with a profound sense of how fragile life is and how we need to find joy and light wherever we can. She feels privileged to be able to take this sense with her into her role with PILSC while putting her strong admin skills to good use.