In February 2010, Southern Cross University’s Centre for Children and Young People was commissioned to refine the Seasons for Growth existing program evaluation tools, and to then conduct a large-scale evaluation of the Seasons for Growth Children and Young Peoples program. 

Written by Dr Sallie Newell and Ms Alison Moss, this report provides an overview of the Seasons for Growth program, describes the tool development and presents the evaluation results from 57 Seasons for Growth groups conducted across three countries. 

The evaluation concluded that the program does assist children and young people in their efforts to accept their situation, to deal with change and cope with their grief. It also identified that the program supports participants to build their understanding and skills, enhance their wellbeing, express their views, thoughts and feelings and to strengthen their social and support networks.

To the best of our knowledge, this 2011 report represented the first large-scale, Australian-based evaluation of a grief and loss program for children and young people; it was certainly the first that can be publicly accessed. 

By Sallie Newell and Ms Alison Moss