Arms Of Angels
Guidance Through Grief
The Kids Room

About Arms of Angels

Client comments about Peter Rush, Arms of Angels Counselor

After my husband and I lost our daughter, we felt lost. We felt broken. We were trying to support each other in every way we could but neither of us felt like we were doing an exceptional job at it. Reaching out to your organization was the best thing we could have ever done for ourselves.
Our first session with Peter was such a blessing. He went over all the stages of grief with us, which instantly helped. It felt good to know what we were feeling was a normal part of the grieving process. Understanding that anger and depression come with the territory of grief was crucial to our healing.
Peter guided us through how to continue to be there for each other in the healthiest ways. He never judged us, or told us we weren't doing things correctly. He offered suggestions without criticism and it made us feel like we were already on the right track.
I could truly go on and on about our experience with him but so much of it is so personal and so close to our hearts I will just leave you with this; we gained an angel in heaven when we lost our daughter, and then we found one here on earth with Peter. We will forever be grateful to him for his guidance, understanding, and compassion.
MG, Salinas, CA

Monterey Weekly article - "Wing Span" - November 2014
Monterey County Gives article
Public Service Announcement - National Alliance for Grieving Children poll

Public Service Announcement - National Alliance for Grieving Children poll

July 2012
Contact: Leigh Susan Fitz
Executive Director, Arms of Angels

A recent poll conducted by the National Alliance for Grieving Children found that kids who have lost a parent or sibling bear a burden of sorrow and anxiety, yet they strive to be resilient in the face of their grief and greatly value the support of friends, family and the community, according to the results of this first-ever nationwide poll of bereaved children. For grieving kids, resuming normal life following loss demands successfully navigating the school day. For many, this task becomes harder. Nearly half of kids say they are having more trouble concentrating on school work and about three in 10 say they are not doing as well in school as before. Just 27 percent say that going to school after their loss was helpful. The poll suggests that schools are challenged to provide meaningful support to kids in grief. When asked to grade their school and teachers on "helping me deal with my loved one's death," many kids assigned them either a "C" (15 percent), a "D" (10 percent) or an "F" (23 percent).

Dealing with the death of a loved one is crushing, the findings show. Three quarters (75%) of the kids surveyed say they are currently sad - even though, for the survey sample, the loss was experienced on average more than two years ago. Nearly seven of 10 kids agree the death of their loved one was the worst thing that ever happened to them. More than two in five (41 percent) said that in reaction to their loss they had acted in ways that they knew might not be good for them either physically, emotionally or mentally.

Bereavement centers and grief counseling programs have a critical role to play in fostering a helpful, healthy dialogue within families about loss. A new grief counseling service is available free of charge to Monterey County residents. The program, called 'Arms of Angels', will be held at the Center for Spiritual Living in downtown Monterey at 400 West Franklin Street on Thursdays evenings. Pre-registration is necessary for joining. Children ages 5-19 are welcome and they must be accompanied by a parent. For more information and to register go to or contact the Executive Director at 831-521-3672.

Here are other valuable resources for grieving families and concerned individuals: New York Life logo
  • "The Grief Journey of a Child," an online brochure offered by the New York Life Foundation, is focused on helping individuals help kids and families who are grieving. The brochure includes key research findings, testimony from kids talking about grief in their own words, a perspective on childhood grief from a leading bereavement expert, and some tips and resources for concerned friends of all ages.
  •, offered by the New York Life Foundation, provides additional informational and educational resources for parents, kids, educators and the public regarding loss.
  • NAGC logo, offered by the National Alliance for Grieving Children, includes guides for parents and educators, resources for professionals and volunteers providing support to grieving children, and an interactive map identifying family bereavement centers across the nation.

About the Poll

The New York Life Foundation/National Alliance for Grieving Children (NAGC) poll was conducted in-person at bereavement centers during group sessions between November 21, 2011 and January 5, 2012. Children and teenagers under the age of 19 were given printed copies of the survey, customized with questions pertaining to the gender and type of family member they lost (parent or sibling). An adult Group Leader read each question and response category aloud, allotting time for every participant to answer. Surveys were immediately sealed in an envelope and sent to New York Life Foundation for data processing. Participation in the survey was strictly voluntary and all answers remained confidential. In a similarly sized random sample survey, the margin of error (at the 95% confidence level) for the total population in this study (531) would be plus or minus approximately 4.3 percentage points. The question "How long ago did your loved one die?" was answered by 497 respondents; the mean response was 2.2 years. The polling was overseen by Mathew Greenwald & Associates, a premier full service market research firm headquartered in Washington, D.C.