New Logo Horizontal.jpg

The Journey Journal

June 2022

In this issue:

  • Missing a Dad on Father's Day
  • Donuts and Butterflies
  • Finding Comfort from the Start
  • 15 volunteers trained to help children who are grieving
  • Spotlight: Program Manager, Bryna Talamantez
  • A Steadfast Source of Support
  • Swing Fore Hope
Untitled design _23_.png

Sean, a first grader, created artwork in remembrance of his dad.


Missing a Dad on Father's Day

Holidays can be especially difficult for children who are grieving. With Father’s Day right around the corner, children who have experienced a death of a father or a father figure can sometimes find this particular holiday challenging to navigate through.

"I feel alone and that no one will love me like my dad did,"

says 8-year-old Sydney.

In our support groups we work with children to help them through the difficult holidays.

Twitter post size _11_.png

Our Donuts and Butterflies Event is Back!

August 6, 2021  I  9:00 am-10:00 am

This is a special remembrance event for the families we serve to gather at locations in Plano, Frisco, and Dallas to release butterflies in memory of their loved ones. We look forward to gathering together to honor our loved ones and see friends after the summer. 

If you would like to support this impactful experience, click here.

Finding Comfort From the Start

We understand families come to Journey with a heavy heart. Thirteen-year-old Jackson and his mother recently joined our support groups.

"My son and I had such a wonderful time. It was a huge bonding experience and really validated a lot of the ups and downs of grief we both have been battling."

Jackson met with a group of teens who had also experienced a death of a loved one. He openly shared his feelings with his peers and expressed himself through activities, discussions, and art projects that our curriculum provided. Jackson's mother joined a group based on the type of loss her family experienced so she could have the opportunity to talk about her grief and her son’s grief with other parents who get it.

"We look forward to our continued experience with Journey of Hope in helping us heal. We are so grateful for such a blessing."

All families complete an intake with one of our staff members before starting support groups. Jackson and his mother had a discussion with our Program Director, Kerri Newman, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. Kerri says this is a great opportunity to share about the support groups, what to expect, and to help alleviate the normal worries and anxieties many feel before starting our program. Jackson expressed he was concerned about talking in front of other kids, but after his first group realized it wasn’t as scary as he thought.


We are so grateful for those who continue to support us so that we can meet with families at no cost. 


15 volunteers trained to help children who are grieving

In May, we had 15 new volunteer facilitators and Board Members complete our training to lead peer support groups. We are so grateful for their compassion and hearts to support families who are grieving!

A huge thanks to Mark Hundley, one of our co-founders, who opens the training with his wisdom, our amazing volunteer facilitators who shared their lessons learned and encouragement, and Grace Avenue UMC for hosting us. 

Click here to learn more about the impact of volunteer facilitators

Spotlight: Program Manager, Bryna Talamantez

Untitled design _11_.png

At the age of 9, you are just a kid. You naturally assume your parents will always be there. For many children, their childhood is torn at the seam by the untimely death of a parent. Our Program Manager, Bryna Talamantez, became a staff member in 2019. But her journey with us began long before. Bryna’s father died when she was 9 years old. She quickly learned that, despite their best efforts, her friends at school didn’t understand what she was going through, and her mother was struggling to navigate her grief as well. It was then they started attending Journey’s support groups.

“Journey was the only place I could talk about my feelings. It was nice to be with other kids who just got it,” Bryna says. 

After her mom died when she was 19 and in college, Bryna decided to use her experiences and knowledge by becoming a therapist specializing in grief. Her grief story and the comfort she received from Journey of Hope’s services led her to pay it forward by becoming a Group Facilitator while she was in grad school.

“I will always be grateful for the founders of Journey and for my group facilitators who let me feel what I needed to feel in a completely judgement-free space,” says Bryna.

As the Program Manager, Bryna runs the Support Groups in Dallas and the Thursday Plano location. She meets with families for intake appointments and assists the Program Director in developing and preparing curriculum for support groups and family events. She recruits our Group Facilitators and Meal Providers, creates content for our Social Media, leads webinars to educate professionals about working with children who are grieving, and makes appearances at many of our outreach events.

“This organization means so much to me, and I am so honored to continue to champion for children who are grieving,” says Bryna.

Like all good things, Bryna’s time with us is coming to an end. Her entrepreneurial spirit is taking her in a new direction as she focuses on her private practice in counseling children, adults, and families. The impact she has made on Journey will endure as part of our organization’s culture of support and healing. We wish her well as she pursues this next chapter in her career. Thank you, Bryna, for your time and dedication to Journey of Hope.

Untitled design _36_.png

A Steadfast Source of Support

This month marks 24 years of Journey of Hope providing free peer grief support to children and their families who have experienced a death. Journey has been a steadfast source of support for North Texas families for those 24 years – even through a pandemic! The need for our services is growing and we are expanding to meet that need and serve more children.


We invite you to become a steadfast source of support for Journey of Hope by becoming a monthly donor. As a monthly donor, you will make it possible to help more children know they are not alone as they grieve. Can you give $24 a month ($1 for every year of support groups)? That 80 cents a day will make a difference.

Yes, I’ll become a monthly donor today!

Swing Fore Hope

Our 19th Annual Swing Fore Hope Golf Tournament was a success! Thank you to all the golfers, sponsors, and volunteers who made this event possible.

Missed it? Click here to see photos

Click here to be notified of our 2023 tournament

LinkedIn post Size _20_.png
Visit our Website
Facebook      Instagram      LinkedIn      Twitter