Great news! Today three of the UK’s biggest child bereavement charities have announced their support for Apart of Me and their willingness to work with Bounce Works to develop new services.
We’ve repeated our press release in full below:
Three of the UK’s biggest child bereavement charities have just announced a brand new partnership to create a first-of-its-kind digital service - with the potential to revolutionise the way that young people cope with grief. Child Bereavement UK, Grief Encounter and Winston’s Wish are joining forces with Bounce Works - the digital design foundry behind Apart Of Me.
Apart of Me is a mobile game based on an enchanting island, a safe space a young person can explore whenever they want. The character in the game has experienced a tragic event, and the aim of the game is to support your character to grow by discovering things on the island that allow them to turn their experience into wisdom they can share with others. The character is supported throughout by an Oracle who acts as a wise guide.
The primary aim of the partnership is to continue to develop innovative features in the Apart of Me world, evolving a digital service that can help reduce the sense of isolation that affects so many grieving young people. With an estimated one child in every classroom having lost a parent, and 41% of young offenders experiencing a childhood bereavement, this is a much needed service.
Louis Weinstock, Child Psychotherapist and co-founder of Bounce Works, said: “We believe this new partnership and app will play a crucial role in ensuring young people’s unresolved grief doesn’t turn into bigger problems down the line. Creating a therapeutic digital service around grief is a challenge, and it needs the expertise of these three wonderful organisations to ensure the service becomes highly effective and sustainable. We aspire for this to become the go-to digital platform for bereaved teens around the world. We want to build a global grief community for young people.”
The prototype has already received glowing endorsements, being featured in The Guardian’s top 10 tech projects to look forward to in 2018. The app has the full support of celebrities Jon Snow and Stephen Fry, as well as grief experts such as Julia Samuel MBE (Founder Patron of Child Bereavement UK and author of Grief Works) and Dr. Shelley Gilbert, MBE (Founder and Patron of Grief Encounter and author of the Grief Encounter Workbook and Chocolate Chipped).
Connecting online and offline communities is a core feature of this partnership. In a recent workshop, Child Bereavement UK, Winston’s Wish, and Grief Encounter sent some of their Young Ambassadors to an immersive game design workshop in London.
The next phase of Apart of Me will be released later this year on the App Store and on Google Play. In this release, young people will be able to explore a network of caves on the island, discovering and interacting with stories from bereaved young people from all around the world.
“At Grief Encounter we are so very pleased and excited to be partnering with Bounce Works, Child Bereavement UK and Winston’s Wish to support the development of ‘Apart of Me’. We truly believe that the establishment of this partnership between our organisations and our continued collaborative working could make a real difference to all the children, young people and families we aim to support.
Teenagers and Young Adults in particular are a group that we have collectively identified as needing more innovative and digitally-led therapeutic and talking tools to help them process their grief. Our combined involvement in the ‘Apart of Me’ App represents our commitment to the development and progression of bereavement services in the UK, to make sure every bereaved child is supported through their grief.”
- Richard Fogleman, CEO, Grief Encounter
“Winston’s Wish is delighted to be working with Bounce Works to develop Apart of Me. It is so important that we continue to develop and offer young people support in a way that they are comfortable with and that appeals to them. Engaging young people in traditional ways can be challenging, yet we know that with the right support following a bereavement, this age group is able to adapt to their new reality with confidence and go on to live full and flourishing lives. We feel that Apart of Me will offer a valuable tool to work with this age group in the future.”
- Sacha Richardson, Director of Clinical Services, Winston’s Wish
“The young people supported by Child Bereavement UK tell us how important it is to be able to access support via a range of media and frequently emphasise how important the digital world is to them. We are delighted to be working with Bounce Works to create Apart of Me.”
- Ann Rowland, Director of Bereavement Support & Education, Child Bereavement UK
If you have any questions at all, just get in touch. We love to hear from our supporters!