FamiliesConnect through Online Workshops

If you or a loved one are affected by a work-related tragedy, FamiliesConnect Online Workshops offer a chance to learn healthy coping skills, alongside others who’ve been through a similar experience. 

Each workshop session is led by a grief counsellor, Threads of Life staff member or skilled volunteer. There will be practical tips and information specifically tailored for those dealing with a life-altering workplace injury, occupational disease, or workplace fatality. Participants are free to share as much or as little of their own experience as they feel comfortable doing. 

Workshops are offered at no charge, thanks to the support of Threads of Life’s partners and funders. 

Registration is first-come, first-served. Seats at each workshop are limited, so if you register and find you cannot attend, please notify us. 

If you have questions or need assistance, please call 1-888-567-9490 or email [email protected]

Upcoming workshop sessions you don’t want to miss…

Introduction to Expressive Arts with Story Cards and Poetry with Sue Morling and Michele Desjardins - February 16

February 16, 2022  6-8 p.m. EST (convert for my time zone)

Expressive art is all about the process of making art not the finished product. It is a practice that invites people to respond creatively to things that matter. It uses all forms of art to authentically express ideas, thoughts and emotions which can lead to personal insights and a sense of well-being. It can involve all art forms – visual, movement, sound, poetry, and storytelling. The use of our innate creativity in whatever art form, fires up the neurons in the brain and assists in developing new neural pathways. Extended practice of mindful creative endeavours will help make new neuron connections! In this workshop we invite participants to be playful and even a bit silly to create a fantastical story using presented story cards. The facilitators will guide the participants through a group story making process. Participants will be asked to record words from each storyline that resonate with them. When the story telling is complete the facilitators will guide the group in an easy poetry creation using the recorded words. There will be time to reflect and share the poem with the group.

Sue graduated from the Haliburton School of Art and Design in 2019 with her certificate in Expressive Arts. From an early age Sue knew that she would pursue a career that involved being outside. She started out in the environmental field but found that she had a need to be “of service” to people. She returned to college to study recreation and leisure where she was introduced to the field of Horticulture Therapy. One of the speakers at a job fair said “with your environmental background, you would like it”. That was back in 1999! Through training workshops at Homewood Healthcare Centre, being a member of the Canadian Horticulture Therapy Association and training in Expressive Arts at Haliburton School Arts she has developed a strong philosophy that nature can nurture a person. For the past 18 years she has been practising therapeutic horticulture (recently with a sprinkle of expressive arts) with the residents and day participants at Services and Housing In the Province (SHIP) – Peace Ranch Program. She lives near Orangeville, Ontario beside Island Lake Conservation Authority with her husband, son, daughter and dog, Bella.

Following decades of corporate work, including a number of years at WSIB, Michele discovered the blending of her passions for art and helping people as an Expressive Arts Practitioner, Haliburton School of Art & Design. She has furthered her studies and practice in Therapeutic Arts and Nature-Based Expressive Arts with the Canadian International Institute of Art Therapy, British Columbia. Currently living in St Thomas, Ontario in a small home with a handful of ‘bad barn cats’ and lots of gardens.. Michele offers workshops both online and locally. She can be found every Sunday morning in the Flying Pig Studio on Facebook at michele.desjardins.54. It is a private group and is free. If you are interested in joining a bunch of creative people from all over the world, shoot a message to Michele or email at [email protected]



Sharing the healing: How to help others find Threads of Life - March 9

March 9, 2022  6-8 p.m. EST and 6-8 p.m. PST (convert for my time zone)

Sharing the healing: How to help others find Threads of Life If you’ve been helped by Threads of Life, then you likely wish you could help other people who’ve been affected by tragedy find healing too. You can! And reaching out is not as scary as it sounds. In this workshop we’ll brainstorm ideas for people and businesses you might approach, and what you can say when you get there. You’ll also come away with a list of the tools and resources already available to help you. Our ultimate goal is to make sure that every Canadian family who could benefit from Threads of Life, knows how to find us. Let’s share the healing!


Dreams, Signs, and Coincidences: Ways our Loved Ones Stay Connected - April 20

April 20, 2022  6-8 p.m. EST (convert for my time zone)

This talk will provide information about after-death communication, dreams, signs, visitations, warnings, electrical interference, coincidences and many other experiences that are quickly discounted in our society but are so common that we can no longer call them extraordinary. We will explore the most current science and research about the afterlife and about the sometimes-unusual ways our loved ones reach out to us. There will be time to chat about our personal beliefs, ask questions or even dispute the fascinating accounts of bereaved people who have come forward to share the comfort they have felt after such an encounter. Perhaps more importantly we will also talk about what happens when people want a message but do not receive one or believe that they have not experienced a much-desired communication.

Eunice is a registered nurse and a PhD prepared social worker with a history of working in oncology, end of life care, and bereavement support. She is currently an Associate Professor in Thanatology and the Chair of the Department at King’s University College at Western University in London, Ontario. Her teaching and research focuses on palliative care, traumatic grief, bereavement support, and extraordinary experiences in death, dying and bereavement. The most important things to know about Eunice are that she is the immensely proud mother of one, she is sat on with great frequency by Dany and Wall.e (cats) and she has experienced numerous losses ….as we all have….. and when she speaks about extraordinary experiences, she is also telling her story.


Increase Your Sense of Awareness of True Kindness and True Friendship - May 18

May 18, 2022  6-8 p.m. EST (convert for my time zone)

Have you ever really thought about the word “KINDNESS” and the actual weight it carries? For “Kindness” to be present there are three conditions: “the quality of being friendly, generous and considerate.” So, one can be friendly and not kind or both generous and considerate and not kind. When all three conditions are present, we feel the pleasure of real friendship. Being kind to yourself is an essential form of selfcare and a vital foundation for sustained kindness to others. I am hoping you will join me in this discussion of Kindness. It’s such a common, simple everyday word, involving sometimes such simple acts and yet capable of transforming the world of a person who has suffered a workplace tragedy from hopelessness and despair to encouragement and hope. I look forward to the sharing of thoughts, ideas and experiences.

Joanne was born and raised on beautiful Manitoulin Island. She graduated from Marymount School of Nursing at the Sudbury General Hospital in 1969. She nursed in Home Care and Long Term Care settings focusing mainly on the elderly. She has dealt with death, dying, grief and bereavement over her 40-year nursing career. Even with all her nursing experiences and book learning, she feels she was totally unprepared for her personal heart-wrenching loss.