Local Support Groups

The pain of losing a loved one does not stop at the time of the funeral service, it continues long after your friends have gone home. At Anderson Funeral Home and Crematory, we recognize this and we are proud to be one of the few funeral homes in our region to offer complete Aftercare resources.

Our Aftercare Coordinator Jerilyn Dawson offers continued support to families immediately following the death, and far into the future.  Below are just a few of the programs supported through our funeral home:

Grief Support for Survivors
Once the funeral is over many people realize that they are just beginning to adjust to their new life without their loved one. There can be an overwhelming amount of paperwork (Social Security, Veterans benefits, Life Insurance) that needs to be completed. Our professional funeral directors and Aftercare team are here to help.  

Widow/Widower Pre-Arrangement
After losing a spouse most widows/widowers prefer to come to grips with their own eventual mortality and funeral arrangements. It is a very good time to get together with a Pre-Arrangement specialist at Anderson Funeral Home to sit down and make arrangements for you. That way the funeral home can keep a file and you will know that your wishes are carried out as per your requests. Our Prearrangement Specialist, Kathy Patton, along with each of our funeral directors can help you and your family prearrange at your convenience.

Children’s Grief Connection
Anderson Funeral Home and Crematory has teamed up with the Minnesota Funeral Directors Association to sponsor camps for grieving families. Grieving families have an opportunity to attend camp together where they will experience a developmentally designed program for all members of their family.

Friday evening the family will spend time getting to know other families and the volunteers they will spend the weekend with. Saturday morning the families separate into groups with others their own age for fun camp activities and meaningful ceremonies. Sunday morning family members reunite for the close of camp and lunch before heading home.

Our hope is the weekend's activities will help family members heal and connect along their grief journey, finding meaning in the memories they share as they embark on life after the death of their loved one.

If you know of a child or family member who may be helped by this experience, please call us to learn of the scholarship opportunities available.

Six Week Grief Seminars
At Anderson Funeral Home and Crematory, we know that everyone grieves in their own way.  For this reason, we offer both fall and spring six week seminars to help learn about what may be normal, what may be right, and what may work to help people understand grief as an immense pain and overwhelming task. Our seminars are open to anyone grieving a death whether it's the death of a spouse, sibling, child, friend, or relative.

Grief Library
At Anderson Funeral Home and Crematory, we offer a library to help people who are grieving. We have many books available for families to borrow, about all aspects of grief and deathcare.

The New Horizons Program
Anderson Funeral Home and Crematory offers and funds a group known as "New Horizons", available to anyone widowed who is experiencing grief and/or loss. New Horizons operates as both a support and social group with many activities available to members each month.

Aftercare Coordinator Jerilyn Dawson moderates the group, and there is no fee to join.  If you would like to be on the newsletter mailing list, please give us a call or email Jerilyn at jeridawson@andersonfuneral.net.

Below are some of the programs offered through New Horizons:

Sunday Noon Meals
Sundays are usually family days and after a spouse has died, Sunday can be a lonely time. New Horizons offers a Sunday noon get-together at local restaurants with no formal agenda – just a chance to have some company and share a meal with new friends.

Friday Night Dinner Out
Many of our members meet out for a nice Friday night dinner twice per month – again, a chance for people to come together for fellowship and to share a meal with friends.

This group meets on a morning once a month and was started to fulfill the need for working widows to get together to visit and support each other.

Social Activities
Once or twice per month, New Horizons sponsors social activities just for the fun of it!  The group has enjoyed theater in Minneapolis, Twins games, Glenwood Boat Rides, Valentine and Christmas Gatherings, Bus trips to St. Cloud, picnics, dining out, bus tours, and many small groups including cards, games…etc.. The activities are partially funded by Anderson Funeral Home.

Jeri sends out a newsletter every other month to all on the New Horizon mailing list, which covers over 400 recipients in our area.  If you would like to be included just call us at (320) 763-5900 or email Jerilyn at jeridawson@andersonfuneral.net.

Board Meetings
The New Horizons board usually meets once each month to determine what activities the group should pursue. If you are interested in serving on the board, contact Jeri.

Community Memorial Services
These are ecumenical services designed to honor and recognize those who have died throughout the year. They are open to everyone and are often scheduled around holidays.

National Grief Resources
In Addition to our in-house Grief Support, below are a few helpful National Grief Resources to consider:

Center for Loss & Transition 
A leading provider of information and inspiration in the areas of illness and dying, loss and grief, healthy caregiving, life transition, and spirituality.

Growth House 
An international gateway to resources for life-threatening illness and end of life issues. Hypertext topic pages link to sites around the world. Links to hospice and home care, bereavement, death with dignity, AIDS, and related topics in life-threatening illness.

GriefNet is an Internet community of persons dealing with grief, death, and major loss. They have many email support groups. Their integrated approach to online grief support provides help to people working through loss and grief issues.

National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization Committed to improving end of life care and expanding access to hospice care with the goal of profoundly enhancing quality of life for people dying in America and their loved ones.

If you or a family member has any questions about grief and healing, please contact us at (320) 763-5900