The Duke Endowment recently awarded Dougy Center: The National Grief Center for Children & Families a $210,000 research grant to evaluate and expand an intervention for youth in foster care using Dougy Center’s peer grief support model.
Through the study, teens and young adults in South Carolina’s foster care system will participate in the L.Y.G.H.T. program (Listening and Led by Youth in Foster Care: Grief, Hope, and Transitions). L.Y.G.H.T. support groups are based on Dougy Center’s evidence-informed model of peer grief support and are specifically designed for youth in the child welfare system. The grant will fund the second randomized control trial (RCT) of the L.Y.G.H.T. intervention and will be used to expand L.Y.G.H.T. support groups to teens and young adults throughout South Carolina.
In addition, The Duke Endowment grant will fund a new full-time, SC L.Y.G.H.T. State Coordinator position for two years. Juliette Martinez, M.S.W. was recently hired to fill this role, and brings five years of experience with the project as a researcher and practitioner. As the SC L.Y.G.H.T. State Coordinator, Martinez will work to expand the L.Y.G.H.T. program throughout South Carolina and provide direct support to L.Y.G.H.T. community sites and volunteer facilitators.
“We’re thrilled about this grant and our ability to bring the L.Y.G.H.T. program to additional teens and young adults in foster care,” said Dr. Monique Mitchell, National Director of the L.Y.G.H.T. program. “We are extremely grateful to Thornwell, Carolina Youth Development Center, and Epworth Children’s Home for their continued support of the program. We also welcome our newest partners, Children’s Attention Home and Pendleton Place, as we expand the reach of L.Y.G.H.T.”
Additional community sites in South Carolina will have the opportunity to be trained on the L.Y.G.H.T. intervention in July 2022.
Based in Charlotte, N.C., The Duke Endowment is a private foundation that strengthens communities in North Carolina and South Carolina by nurturing children, promoting health, educating minds, and enriching spirits.
Founded in 1982, Dougy Center supports children, teens, young adults, and families who are grieving before and after a death. In addition to its several locations in Oregon, which have helped over 55,000 people find hope and healing, Dougy Center’s world-renowned model has been replicated more than 500 times in organizations nationally and internationally. Dougy Center believes grief is a normal and natural reaction to loss, and The Dougy Center Model focuses on helping children, teens, and young adults express grief in a supportive group environment. For more information about Dougy Center's L.Y.G.H.T. program here.