DC seminar and camp provides support for loved ones of fallen service members

The loss of a family member who served in the military can be difficult to navigate, but one organization is making sure those who are grieving don’t have to do it alone this Memorial Day.

The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors hosted its 27th Annual National Military Survivor Seminar and Good Grief Summer Camp in D.C. over the weekend.

“We want to support all those who are impacted by that loss,” said Audri Beugelsdijk, Vice President of Survivor Services for TAPS. “Our goal, really, is to build the support structure for military families who have lost so much of that support.”

Loved ones of fallen service members had access to everything from counseling and self care seminars to workshops for kids. Children also presented handmade wreaths created during the camp to honor their loved ones.

The program also took 1,300 survivors and supporters to Arlington National Cemetery, virtually and in person, for a memorial service. Beugelsdijk said community-based care is at the center of the organization’s mission this holiday weekend.

“To remember those who have gone before us, it’s something we need to do together because we are stronger together,” she said.

The organization also offers a 24/7 hotline. More information is available on the organization’s website.

“There’s a tremendous amount of hope and healing and heart that goes into the support for our families and that’s what being together this weekend in D.C. is all about,” Beugelsdijk said.

Melissa Howell

Melissa Howell joined WTOP Radio in March 2018 and is excited to cover stories that matter across D.C., as well as in Maryland and Virginia. 

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