Read Sarah's Willow House Story
"As a social worker, I have been met with many challenges when trying to help the children and families with whom I work. One of the greatest challenges lies in finding quality community agencies and support for our most neediest of students. I can truly say with 100% certainty that Willow House was not only one of the most effective community resources I have been able to work with but also one of the most compassionate agencies. I was able to directly work with Willow House's School Program Coordinator in order to co-facilitate an in-school grief support group that had an immeasurable positive impact on some of our students who were greatly struggling with the loss of a loved one.
The staff at Willow House also came to Waukegan High School in order to present to our entire high school staff on strategies for working with students who have experienced loss. This professional development had such a profound impact on hundreds of educators who directly work with students that are dealing with the stressors and difficult emotions that come with losing a loved one.
Words cannot even begin to describe the gratitude that I feel for the staff of Willow House. The work that they do every single day has such a beautiful and powerful impact on all who come into contact with and have the privilege of working with them. They have not only directly impacted the lives of hundreds of students and staff members at Waukegan High School but also have helped improve my clinical skills when working with my current and future students who experience grief and loss. The staff at Willow House pride themselves on both working diligently with grieving students and families directly and empowering fellow clinicians and educators to help support grieving individuals. The work they are doing is truly priceless and I am forever grateful for them."
Ms. Sarah LaFrancis
School Social Worker
Sarah shared her story in support of Willow House on #GivingTuesday. We had a day for giving thanks. We had two for getting deals. Today is #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back. Use this day December 2, 2014 to support grieving children, teens, families, and communities by making a donation to Willow House. No donation is too small! Because of YOU, Willow House will be able to continue providing support and assistance to schools and school leaders who are faced with grief just like Sarah's school. Thank you for making Willow House a part of your annual giving!
“I firmly believe that as we look back on the pivotal, early years of our loss, it will be through the efforts of Willow House that we were able to move forward, not afraid to look back, fully understanding and accepting our loss.” - Willow House Father