A new walking group will help Langley residents cope with grief and loss.
For those grieving the loss of a relative, support can come from friends, relatives, or even from the quiet presence of fellow bereaved people.
The Langley Hospice Society is launching a low-key initiative to help those suffering a recent loss.
On April 22 the Supportive Steps Walking Group will begin a series of weekly walks from the Hospiceâ€™s Programs Center in Langley City.
The idea is not to create a mobile support group. Those walking can come and get some light exercise, and if they need it, support from people going through the same process of grieving.
If they want to talk, they can talk, and if they want to simply keep quiet, they can do that, too, said Shivani Kaushik of the Hospice Society.
â€œNot having that pressure is what the draw is,â€ Kaushik said.
It will enable people to make connections in the community as well.
â€œWhen weâ€™re grieving, we can feel like weâ€™re just spinning off into space by ourselves,â€ said Kaushik.
Volunteers like Wendy Davies, Henny Valk, and Carmen will lead the groups, heading down the paths and sidewalks of southern Langley City.
Davies is a fitness instructor who also does work with seniors and has a daughter who works for the Hospice Society.
Davies said the walks will last about 45 minutes.
â€œIt will get the endorphins going,â€ said Davies.
Carmen said one of the main benefits will be getting people outside, rather than just sitting around indoors.
She has volunteered with hospice for eight years, having taken advantage of their grief support programs many years ago.
â€œItâ€™s nice to give back to the community,â€ Carmen said.
The walks are expected to run rain or shine on Tuesdays at 11 a.m.
Walks may be moved to an earlier time in the morning during the summer if temperatures climb.
Although there is no requirement to sign up in advance â€“ walkers can simply drop by â€“ about five to eight people have already expressed an interest in the first walk.
Walks will start at the Hospice Programs Centre located at 20660 48th Avenue in south Langley City.
For more information on this or other Hospice programs, call 604-530-1115.