"A Companion is someone who shares the experience of another" Oxford Dictionary
Companions are the people who lead Seasons for Growth groups. The role is not that of a teacher or therapist, but as a guide who leads and accompanies participants through the Seasons for Growth program. Companions may be school/agency staff, endorsed parent volunteers or other suitable adults who undertake a two day training workshop and subsequent accreditation with Good Grief to deliver our programs.
84% of our Companions say that Seasons for Growth has changed them, particularly around improving their understanding of children and strengthening their own personal qualities.*
An effective Seasons for Growth Companion is a person who:
• cares deeply about supporting young people to understand and manage issues of change and loss
• can facilitate learning through effective small-group processes
• can listen deeply and effectively
• is not burdened by their own unresolved grief
• has the ability to express and deal with their own feeling
• has a sense of humour and can relate well to the age group they are companioning
• understands issues and responsibilities related to Mandatory Reporting and Child Protection
• is willing to participate fully in the Companion training
• does not bring personal agenda to the group
• acts supportively and does not rescue, distract or make participants dependent
• trusts in the participants' experiences and capacity to learn to choose what is best for themseleves
• asks 'what' and 'how' questions, not 'why' or 'which'
• respects the uniqueness of each person's life story, including cultural differences
• is able to affirm others
• has knowledge of Child Protection Procedures and has been Police Checked (if working with children)
Who can become a Companion?
A teacher, psychologist, chaplain, nurse, counsellor, social worker or someone who feels that they would like to offer the program to their community.
All potential Companions must be endorsed by their employer or approved agency, (school, community centre, parish etc.) They also need a background check specific to their state or territory and have clearance to work with children, if running the Children and Young People's Program.
Individuals must undertake a two day training program in order to become a Companion. This involves learning the theory and principles behind the program, the skills and techniques necessary to implement it and to become fully aware of the possibilities and limitations of their role so as to empower them to run a successful program.
* Note: Only trained Companions can order and use the Seasons for Growth materials.