History of MargaretAnn's Program
MargaretAnn's Place was founded in Kenosha in 1998 and named in honor of MargaretAnn Smith-Jones, who died in 1997 at the age of 20 months.
Upon her sudden death, her mother Debra Smith-Andersen was unable to find support services for their son, Jared. The family discovered there were centers for grieving children across the nation and started MargaretAnn's Place. Unfortunately MargaretAnn's Place dissolved as an independent agency in 2014.
Fortunately, local agencies in Racine, Milwaukee and Kenosha picked up the baton to continue services. FSR has been proudly offering MargaretAnn's Program since 2014. This monthly program offers opportunities for children and teens grieving the loss of someone close to them to engage in peer discussions, organized activities, and peer bonding.
Groups are led by therapists and trained volunteer facilitators who provide a safe environment for children and teens to express themselves. Participants are divided into age appropriate groups to allow for the most benefit.
Purpose and Activities of MargaretAnn's Program
Because grief can often cause feelings of isolation, peer support in itself helps children in the grieving process. Knowing they are not alone, "weird," or "crazy" for their thoughts and feelings helps children and teens cope in this strange new world that is missing someone they love.
Group activities focus on a variety of concepts including:
Accepting the reality of death
Feeling the feelings associated with the death or loss with safe people
Learning healthy coping skills
Reinvesting in life
Activities include art, writing, music, and physical play. These activities allow children and adolescents to develop healthy coping skills, nurture personal growth, develop confidence and skills, and provide them with opportunities for future success, despite the loss of a loved one.
Cost & How to Get Involved
Thanks to the generosity of individual and corporate donors, MargaretAnn's Program is free to all participants. Registration is required however.
To become involved, please contact us at:
Want to Volunteer?
Help children and adolescents grieve the loss of someone important to them by becoming a volunteer in the MargaretAnn's Program.
Volunteer Group Facilitators use structured activities to provide educational and emotional support and guidance to participants. Activities include art, writing, music, and physical play. These activities allow children and adolescents to develop healthy coping skills, nurture personal growth, develop confidence and skills, and provide them with opportunities for future success, despite the loss of a loved one.
Volunteers must commit to one year of service, must be at least 18 years of age, submit to a criminal background check, complete a volunteer application, and complete a volunteer training at the facility.
For more information, contact us at:
*Photos taken from our 2019 annual picnic*