Kids Learn to Grieve a Lost Loved One at Camp Nabe - WBOY - Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

Kids Learn How to Grieve a Lost Loved One at Camp Nabe

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'Nabe' is a Korean word that means butterfly. It's also the namesake of a camp in Bruceton Mills that helps children between the ages of seven to 17 in dealing with grief and loss.

"We use that term, butterfly, because when the kids come to camp they come very shy," said Chris Garbart, the Camp Director. "And by the time Sunday comes to leave they're flying their wings and ready to go because we've given them the tools from the camp for grief and loss and how to use those when they go from camp."

Children come to the camp to learn ways to grieve a lost loved one.

The camp is free and has many aspects including 'Adult Buddies.' Jon Rowh has been participating in the camp as an adult buddy for eight years.

"I think mostly you stay with a camper you're their friend through it you're kind of like their security blanket," Jon Rowh said. "They're going through this tough time, and they don't necessarily know any other kids, and you just kind of shadow them. You're there for them. Your non-judgmental, comfort for them is the biggest thing."

The camp consists of different exercises and activities to get the children to open up about their experiences.

"We have sessions on Saturday... grievance, emotions and feelings," Garbart said. "It's intermixed with some fun activities. So they're learning and not realizing it until the long run when they look back and think, 'Oh I did learn that while I was at camp, and we did do something like that.'"

The camp runs from Friday to Sunday.

The final step has each camper release butterflies and join in on a candle light vigil before being picked up.

"It gives the kids an understanding that grief is acceptable, that it's normal, that it's part of a loss," said Rowh. "It's not a taboo subject, it's not they're weird or their thoughts are weird, or that they should feel bad about being upset."

Camp Nabe celebrated its 18th summer holding the camp at Camp Roy Weller in Bruceton Mills, Preston County.

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