In 2017, Caroline Wright was working on her third cookbook and raising two kids with her husband. Life was busy and full in only the way it can be when you have two kids under the age of five. Then one day everything changed. It was the day she was diagnosed with glioblastoma, an aggressive brain tumor, and given a year to live.
After surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, and radical changes to her lifestyle and diet, Caroline is now considered cancer free. Since her diagnosis she’s written a memoir about her experience based on the Caring Bridge site she used to keep family and friends updated. She also wrote and published a beautiful children’s book, Lasting Love, as a way to help her children know her love will always be with them, no matter what happens.
In 2018, The Dougy Center was selected as one of a handful of children’s bereavement programs to partner with StoryCorps and the New York Life Foundation on Road to Resilience: Memories that Move Us Forward. Road to Resilience was born out of a commitment to helping children cope with the death of a parent, sibling, or loved one.
Partnering on this project meant a group of staff and volunteers from The Dougy Center trained with StoryCorps staff to facilitate 40 minute conversations with children and their adults. At the end of each recording, families decided if they wanted to archive their conversations both with StoryCorps and the Library of Congress. They also chose if they wanted to share their recording with us at The Dougy Center.
Over the next few months, you'll hear short clips of these conversations in a series of mini-episodes. In this third mini-episode, Ruby and Jana talk about Ruby's amazing Grandma Riba who died when Ruby was a young teenager.
*Music by Chad Crouch.*
Maria Collins, Vice President at the New York Life Foundation, and Brennan Wood, The Dougy Center's Executive Director join us to talk about the business of supporting grieving children and families. The New York Life Foundation provides funding for a wide variety of children's grief initiatives focused on research and evaluation, direct service, and resource development and accessibility. The Dougy Center recently received a $1 million-dollar grant from the New York Life Foundation - the largest grant we've received in our 36-year history! In our conversation we discuss the projects this grant funded and also how Brennan and Maria have been changed by this work.