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 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 contact@threadsoflife.ca

Upcoming sessions you don’t want to miss…

Kickstarting Mental Wellness with Karen Simmonds - January 21

January 21, 2021  6 – 8 p.m. ET (convert for my time zone)

Another year has started! This interactive workshop will look at the impact of 2020, dealing with expectations of a new year and beating the winter blues!

Karen Simmonds is a certified bereavement educator, grief counsellor and cancer survivor whose personal journey and educational accreditations have unified her philosophy of “companioning through grief”. Her inspirational teachings of respecting and honouring the multifaceted needs of those who have experienced loss, has touched individuals and audiences across Canada. Karen feels privileged to spend this time with you today.


Friends & Kindness: Flowers in the Garden of Life with Joanne Wade - February 11

February 11, 2021  6 – 8 p.m. ET (convert for my time zone)

Friends & Kindness: Flowers in the Garden of Life

On this journey we can gain strength from each other through friendship and spreading kindness. Both can help pick us up when things are feeling difficult. Sometimes flecks of happiness are found by nurturing compassion for ourselves, for others and making new connections. At times of despair and feeling hopeless and helpless, these flowers in our garden of life give us a shimmer of brightness and hope for regaining that feeling of joy and happiness we once had.

“How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed in a weary world.”- W Shakespeare

Joanne was born and raised on beautiful Manitoulin Island. She graduated from Mary Mount 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. With all her nursing experiences and book learning, she feels she was totally unprepared for her personal heart wrenching loss. Even with all her nursing experiences, Joanne wasn’t prepared when a workplace incident occurred to her son. Joanne is the proud mother of three children, Chrissy, Laura and Brent and proud Nana to Jaida and Chase and four grand dogs and cats. Retired now, she is an active volunteer in her community and with Threads of Life.


A Reminder to One's Self: Self-Care with Carolyn Sim and Shelby Sandford -- March 23

March 23, 2021 6 – 8 p.m. ET (convert for my time zone)

Self-care is not selfish; it is essential to move forward in your grief. Keeping it all together can be overwhelming and you may feel like there is just no time for self-care. However, to truly help your loved ones you need to take care of yourself first.

Carolyn Sim became involved with Threads of Life after her spouse died from a severe fall at his workplace. Life changed drastically that day. She wanted to ensure that other families impacted by workplace tragedy would know that they are not alone on this journey. Carolyn is a volunteer family guide, a member of the speakers bureau, and a member of the Sarnia Steps for Life committee.   

Shelby Sandford connected with Threads of Life following the loss of her brother in a workplace fatality. Through Threads of Life, Shelby met other children impacted by the loss of their loved ones and felt like she was no longer alone in her sibling grief. As an adult, she is a volunteer family guide and a member of the speakers bureau. She wants others to feel acknowledged and supported throughout their lifelong grief journey.   


Exploring Grief & Loss History with Karen Lapierre Pitts - April 14

April 14, 2021  3-5 p.m. ET (convert for my time zone)

A loss history can allow us space to reflect on past & present grief experiences, giving insight into our own grieving styles and ways we can adjust to life after a significant loss. You may be dealing with the loss of a loved one, an injury, illness (physical or mental), loss of a job or way of life. While nothing may feel normal, understanding what is normal for you can be invaluable to the way you cope and begin to heal.

On February 9, 2000, Karen Lapierre Pitts’ family suffered from a traumatic workplace tragedy. Karen has been part of Threads of Life for many years and is currently the organization’s family support manager working directly with families. She is also an active Family Guide and member of the Speaker’s Bureau. Threads of Life helps families heal after they are affected by a workplace fatality, life-altering injury or occupational disease. It is currently working with more than 3,000 family members from across Canada. Threads of Life promotes public awareness and accountability for workplace health and safety. Its mission is to lead and inspire a culture shift where work-related injuries and illnesses are morally, socially and economically unacceptable. Many things have changed in Karen’s family’s life since that fateful day.