Schools and Youth

Initiatives

Hidden Pain: Children Who Lost a Parent or Caregiver to COVID-19 and What the Nation Can Do To Help Them

Dec 09, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has left hundreds of thousands of children in the United States without parents or other in-home caregivers. COVID Collaborative is working to mobilize government, non-profits, and the private sector to step up and help provide these young people with the supports they need to navigate their grief at this challenging time.

View Initiative

Education Executive Briefs

Sep 01, 2021

As students return to a third year of disrupted learning, the COVID Collaborative and CRPE, the Walton Family Foundation, and the Allstate Foundation are working together to address unfinished learning and restoring student well-being.

View Initiative

#COVIDSafeZones: Sports

Aug 26, 2021

COVID Collaborative and Autonomy 5 Conferences are uniting to encourage team vaccinations, students and college sports communities to slow the spread of COVID. They have published an open letter, calling for #COVIDSafeZones on college game days, endorsed by public health experts and former officials from the past 5 presidential administrations. They have also put out a statement on #COVIDSafeZones and game day safety endorsed by the medical directors of the major college sports leagues.

View Initiative

#COVIDSafeZones: Campuses

Aug 17, 2021

COVID Collaborative has mobilized dozens of public health and science experts and former officials from the Biden, Trump, Obama, Bush, and Clinton Administrations to provide leaders of Institutions of Higher Education with clear and actionable measures they can adopt to keep their students, faculty, and communities safe. We invite other IHE leaders to join this effort to beat the pandemic and restore our national vitality and way of life.

View Initiative

Infection Prevention and Control in Schools

Apr 28, 2021

COVID Collaborative, Harvard's Edmond J. Safra Center, Brown School of Public Health, and New America launched a task force to support schools and districts in implementing CDC guidance and getting students and staff safely back for in-person learning.

View Initiative

Resources

Press

Losing a Caregiver to COVID: Helping Kids Grieve

Roughly 200,000 children in the U.S. have lost a caregiver to COVID-19. In South Dakota, mental-health experts say these cases can have added complications as kids grieve, and a range of support is needed for a strong emotional recovery. Nikki Eining is therapist with Avera Behavioral Health and board member for the Center for the Prevention of Child Maltreatment. She said loss of a biological parent falls under the scope of Adverse Childhood Experiences.

Mike Moen Image credit: Adobe Stock

These children lost young parents to Covid-19. Here's what they want other kids -- and adults -- to know

A 5-year-old had just finished his first day of kindergarten when he watched his young mother collapse and take her final breaths. A 13-year-old has suffered panic attacks since her dad's death. A 17-year-old must face adulthood without his idol. More than 202,000 US children have lost one or both parents to Covid-19, according to estimates from Imperial College London. And the number of children robbed of their parents keeps growing.

Holly Yan Image credit: Courtesy of Sallie Luensman

Churches called to help fill the gap as thousands of children orphaned by COVID-19 need aid

The plight of youth orphaned during the COVID-19 pandemic was forgotten in the scramble to understand, treat and prevent the disease from spreading, according to Albert Reyes, president of Buckner International. “COVID was such a new thing in the United States and around the world that the issue of vulnerable children and families became a secondary issue, and there was an assumption that the social welfare was in place to address these problems during the lockdown,” he recalled.

Jeff Brumley Image credit: (123rf.com)

For kids who lost parents to COVID, the financial consequences compound the emotional toll

Driving her kids home from grief counseling recently, Margaret Garza asked her two sons what they talked about in the session. Julius was 12 when his father died of COVID-19 almost two years ago. His little brother, Aidan, was 10. They’re among the estimated more than 200,000 children in the U.S. who have lost a parent or caregiver to the pandemic.

Alisa Roth Image credit: Courtesy of Margaret Garza

EdNC Toolkit: Best practices for supporting students who have experienced the death of a caregiver

In January, EdNC reported that evidence suggests at least 3,600 children in North Carolina have experienced the death of a caregiver due to COVID-19. Experts now put that estimate closer to 6,000. In February we distributed a survey to principals, school counselors, and EdWeekly newsletter subscribers asking how they and their communities support grieving children. We have since highlighted several examples, and this report includes some of those best practices from throughout the state.

Katie Dukes Image credit: Courtesy of Karen Wood

COVID Deaths Left Orphans: To Their Loss, Add Lifelong Health Risks

With a million Americans dead from Covid, families across the US are struggling with unimaginable grief and loss. More than 200,000 American children are now orphans, having lost a parent or primary caregiver to the pandemic. This short film introduces Avion Simon, teen from the Midwest who is struggling to comprehend the loss of his mother to Covid, only two years after his stepfather passed away. He is finishing high school while helping care for & console his two younger siblings, CJ & Momo.

Sarah Weiser, Jill Rosenbaum

Summer Camp for All

Summer camp is a cherished experience for millions of children, an American tradition with deep roots in the country’s enduring romance with the great outdoors. As much of the United States reels from the pandemic, gun violence and threats to its democracy, the summer camps many have enjoyed for generations may offer something else: healing for America’s young people.

Mara Gay Image credit: Chang W. Lee/The NYT

The children who lost a parent to coronavirus

Aidan Garza often talks about his dad in the present tense, as if David Garza were still right across the living room, sitting in his favourite chair, calling the 12-year-old over to watch a Star Wars film. As if he had never collapsed while out running errands on 30 December, 2020, in Converse, Texas. As if he had never died of Covid, one of the now 1 million people in the US to succumb to the pandemic.

Brad Brooks Image credit: Reuters

1 In Every 200 NYC Children Have Lost A Parent Or Caregiver To COVID. That's Almost Twice The National Rate.

Across the city, around 8,600 children have lost a parent or caregiver to COVID — a population that would entirely fill 15 average-sized New York City public schools. This staggering yet largely hidden toll of the pandemic affects more than 1 in every 200 children in New York City, nearly double the rate across the country.

Fazil Khan Image credit: Ben Fractenberg/THE CITY

Students Need More Support From Schools When a Caregiver Dies

More than 211,000 children and teenagers have lost their primary caregivers due to COVID-19, and experts argue that schools need long-term supports to keep those students on track academically and emotionally. The New York Life Foundation, which tracks child bereavement through a partnership with Judi’s House/JAG Institute, found that after the first year of the pandemic, the number of children who lost a parent or sibling before age 18 jumped from 1 in 14 to 1 in 13.

Sarah D. Sparks Image credit: Francis Sheehan for Education Week and Getty

As Families Grieve, Grandparents Step Up

This is not what Ida Adams thought life would be like at 62. She didn’t expect to be hustling a seventh-grader off to school each weekday. But in January 2021, Ms. Adams’s daughter, Kimya Lomax, died of Covid-19 at 43 after three weeks alone in a hospital with no visitors permitted. She left behind a young daughter.

Paula Span Image credit: Todd Heisler

Report: 1,600 children in New Mexico lost caregiver to COVID-19 | Local news REPORT: 1,600 CHILDREN IN NEW MEXICO LOST CAREGIVER TO COVID-19 | LOCAL NEWS

About two years into the coronavirus pandemic, childcare experts are struggling with the long-term effects that the virus will have on an entire generation of children.

Claudia L. Silva

Report: 1,600 New Mexico children lost caregiver to COVID-19

Roughly two years into the COVID-19 pandemic childcare experts are grappling with the long-term effects the virus will have on a whole generation of children.

Claudia L. Silva

New Mexico ranks as one of the states with the highest rates for parental deaths caused by the disease, with 341 children per 100,000 who have lost a caregiver due to COVID-19, according to a study

Roughly two years into the COVID-19 pandemic childcare experts are grappling with the long-term effects the virus will have on a whole generation of children.

Claudia L. Silva

Study: New Mexico has among highest rates for parental deaths due to COVID-19

New Mexico ranks as one of the states with the highest rates for parental deaths caused by the disease, with 341 children per 100,000 who have lost a caregiver due to COVID-19, according to a study

Susan Dunlap Image credit: pixabay

This Week in COVID & Education Policy: ‘Missed Learning’ Report Show Delayed Progress Across All Grades in NC, Helping Kids Who Lost Caregivers & More Key Updates

Hidden Pain: COVID Collaborative has launched a platform to honor the stories of children who have lost a caregiver to COVID-19 and provide resources to help them and their families as they rebuild and look to the future. 203,649 children under 18 — more than 1 in 360 — lost a parent or other in-home caregiver to COVID-19. “We’re bringing together community organizations, grief groups, government resources and more to surround these families with a comprehensive network of support.”

John Bailey

Children who have lost caregivers to Covid may be flying under the radar, experts say

The “what ifs” creep into Shelia Twyman’s mind when her grandchildren wake at night, crying. The kids lost their mother, Shanna Twyman, to Covid-19 in September. Their father died of liver failure 2 ½ years ago. As Twyman soothes her grandkids back to sleep, she wonders: What else might they have lost if their McAlester, Oklahoma, community hadn’t stepped in to help?

Elizabeth Chuck and Brenda Breslauer and Cynthia McFadden Image credit: Courtesy of the Twyman family

Watson Coleman, Stevens Introduce Resolution Calling on Federal Government to Support Children of Victims of COVID-19

Today, Congresswomen Bonnie Watson Coleman (NJ-12) and Haley Stevens (MI-11) introduced a resolution recognizing the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic on children who have lost caregivers and calling on the Federal Government to identify services and resources that can be used to assist them.

Children who have lost caregivers to Covid may be flying under the radar, experts say

The “what ifs” creep into Shelia Twyman’s mind when her grandchildren wake at night, crying. The kids lost their mother, Shanna Twyman, to Covid-19 in September. Their father died of liver failure 2 ½ years ago. As Twyman soothes her grandkids back to sleep, she wonders: What else might they have lost if their McAlester, Oklahoma, community hadn’t stepped in to help?

Elizabeth Chuck and Brenda Breslauer and Cynthia McFadden Image credit: Courtesy of the Twyman family

COVID Collaborative & Partners Lead Effort to Support COVID-Bereaved Children

Today, the COVID Collaborative launched the Hidden Pain National Online Clearinghouse to help the more than 200,000 children who have lost a parent or other in-home caregiver to COVID-19, based on data as of late February 2022. This is 1 in every 360 children in the country.

More than 200,000 kids have lost a parent or caregiver to Covid. Efforts to help them have been haphazard.

“If a child has lost a parent, someone needs to show up at that doorstep right away — and I mean right away,” one professor of pediatrics said.

Elizabeth Chuck, Brenda Breslauer and Cynthia McFadden Image credit: Courtesy of the Twyman Family

COVID Collaborative & Partners Lead Effort to Support COVID-Bereaved Children

New National Online Clearinghouse offers support to more than 200,000 children who have lost a parent or caregiver to COVID-19 White House Showing Strong Leadership to Support COVID-Bereaved Children

More than 200,000 US children lost a parent or caregiver to COVID. Efforts to help them have been haphazard

“If a child has lost a parent, someone needs to show up at that doorstep right away — and I mean right away,” one professor of pediatrics said.

Elizabeth Chuck, Brenda Breslauer and Cynthia McFadden

Biden Admin Announces Support for Children Who Lost Caregivers to COVID-19 Following Letter Lead by Reps. Watson Coleman and Pressley

PRESS RELEASE: Biden Admin Announces Support for Children Who Lost Caregivers to COVID-19 Following Letter Lead by Reps. Watson Coleman and Pressley

Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman $ Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley

Helping children grieve the loss of a caregiver due to COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has been full of difficult situations for children, from education disruptions to lack of socialization at important developmental stages. It's also left many children without parents or caregivers. What can clinicians do to help these children?

Candice Jones, MD, FAAP

A growing number of Colorado children have lost a caregiver due to COVID

The more than an estimated 1,700 kids in the state who have lost a caregiver could experience lifelong impact

Julia Fennell Image credit: Getty Images

Millions of children worldwide have lost a parent or caregiver to COVID-19: "The hidden pandemic"

Two years into the pandemic, an estimated 6.7 million children have lost at least one of their parents or caregivers because of COVID-19, according to updated research, marking a grim milestone in what officials have dubbed "the hidden pandemic." That toll includes more than 180,000 children in the United States.

Alexander Tin

Healing Patch supports families impacted by COVID-19 deaths

During the last two years, there have been many statistics about how our world, nation, state and communities have been impacted by COVID-19. A startling number to consider is the more than 167,000 children – roughly one in 450 of all children in the United States – who have lost at least one of their caregivers to COVID-19, according to COVID Collaborative. The Healing Patch Children’s Grief Program has experienced an increasing number of calls from caregivers reaching out for support.

Image credit: Submitted Photo

California considering bill to create trust funds for COVID-19 orphans

More than 20,000 kids in the state have reportedly lost a parent or caregiver.

Ivan Pereira Image credit: Maddie McGarvey/The Washington Post via Getty Images, FILE

Santa Clara Co. proposal aims to provide mental health care to children who've lost parents to COVID

More than 912,000 Americans have died from COVID. Dealing with grief is difficult for surviving family members, especially for children who lose a parent or close relative who cared for them. Efforts are underway both nationally and here in the Bay Area to provide those children with much-needed mental health care.

David Louie

A father’s death, a son’s despair: How COVID upended a family

The Reyes family from California opens up about their experiences with grief and loss during the COVID-19 pandemic. About 167,000 children under 18 have lost a parent or other in-home caregiver to COVID-19, according to a December report by researchers from the COVID Collaborative and Social Policy Analytics. Black and Latino children experienced more than twice the rate of loss of white children.

Brittny Mejia Image credit: Irfan Khan/Los Angeles Times

3,000+ NC children lost a caregiver to COVID, report says

More than 3,000 children in North Carolina have lost a caregiver over the course of the pandemic, according to a report from the COVID Collaborative.

Judith Retana Image credit: AP Photo/Chris O’Meara

Half the nation's caregivers who died by COVID-19 were in 5 states. Georgia is one of them

A new report estimates more than 167,000 children nationwide lost a primary caregiver to COVID-19. Georgia is one of five states making up half that number. GPB’s Ellen Eldridge reports.

Ellen Eldrige Image credit: Pexels stock photo

When Children Suffer COVID-19 Losses, Grandparents Fill the Gap

​More than 167,000 U.S. children have lost a parent or caregiver in the pandemic​.

Carlett Spike Image credit: Courtesy of Pamela Addison

More than 3,600 N.C. children are coping with the death of a caregiver due to the pandemic

At least 3,626 children across North Carolina — mostly students of color — are currently coping with the death of a caregiver due to COVID-19. Schools will bear responsibility for supporting children who’ve experienced this loss as they learn and grow over the next two decades.

Katie Dukes Image credit: Allison Shelley For All4Ed

More Than 3,600 N.C. Children Are Coping With the Death of a Caregiver During the Pandemic

Children who have lost caregivers are more likely to experience mental health problems and lower self-esteem. They’re also at higher risk of suicide, violence, sexual abuse, and exploitation.

Katie Dukes Image credit: Unsplash

A call to action to help America's children who lost caregivers

America’s COVID-19 crisis has not ended, but we have begun to count the staggering size of the nation’s loss. Some of the cruelest pain has come to a group with the least capacity to understand and cope with it — children who have lost a parent or other in-home caregiver to the virus. The impact on these children, their families, and their communities will be that much more profound if Americans do not rally to support them.

John M. Bridgeland and Dan Treglia

Children coping with loss of caregivers are Covid-19 pandemic's 'forgotten grievers'

Ms Courtney Grund, whose husband died of Covid-19 in August, got an alarming text message last week: Her 16-year-old son was “talking about self-harm”, according to the message, sent by his friend. She quickly signed him up for grief counselling, she said in a tearful interview, using her maiden name to protect his privacy.

Image credit: Adriana Zehbrauskas for The New York Times

A powerful ally steps up to support students who’ve lost parents to COVID

COVID Collaborative wants to expand school-based mental health care and provide financial support.

Matt Zalaznick Image credit: AdobeStock

Children, Coping With Loss, Are Pandemic’s ‘Forgotten Grievers’

A bipartisan group led by two former governors is urging President Biden to help an estimated 167,000 children who have lost parents or caregivers.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg Image credit: Adriana Zehbrauskas for The New York Times

Children, faced with loss, are the “forgotten grievers” of the pandemic

A bipartisan group led by two former governors is urging President Biden to help an estimated 167,000 children who have lost their parents or guardians.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg Image credit: Adriana Zehbrauskas/The New York Times

Kids, Coping With Loss, Are Pandemic’s ‘Forgotten Grievers’

Many experts and concerned parents and citizens have come together to express concern for the 167,000 children who have lost parents or caregivers to COVID-19, including a spokesperson for the Division of Well-being and Human Providers, Kirsten Allen.

Marc Barman

Children, coping with loss, are pandemic’s ‘forgotten grievers’

A bipartisan group led by two former governors is urging President Biden to help an estimated 167,000 children who have lost parents or caregivers.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg Image credit: Adriana Zehbrauskas/The New York Times

Biden is urged to help an estimated 167,000 U.S. children who have lost parents or caregivers.

The COVID Collaborative is asking President Biden to initiate a national campaign to identify these children and, with help from the private sector, take steps to improve their emotional and economic well-being. Its recommendations include offering them mental health care and creating a “Covid Bereaved Children’s Fund,” similar to a fund established after the Sept. 11 attacks, to provide up to $10,000 to families in need.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg Image credit: Alyssa Schukar/The New York Times

Children, Coping With Loss, Are Pandemic’s ‘Forgotten Grievers’

The COVID Collaborative recently released the Hidden Pain report which revealed the struggles of the 167,000 children 18 and below who have lost a parent or caregiver. Many people have shared their experiences and emphasized the need to support these children.

Coronavirus Briefing: Boosting older teens

The Covid Collaborative is asking President Biden to initiate a national campaign to identify these children and take steps to improve their emotional and economic well-being. In a report released today, the group recommended offering them mental health care and creating a “Covid-19 Bereaved Children’s Fund,” similar to a fund established after the Sept. 11 attacks, to provide up to $10,000 to families in need.

Jonathan Wolfe Image credit: The New York Times

Children, Coping With Loss, Are Pandemic’s ‘Forgotten Grievers’

A bipartisan group led by two former governors is urging President Biden to help an estimated 167,000 children who have lost parents or caregivers.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg Image credit: Adriana Zehbrauskas for The New York Times

Groups Tackle Vaccinations to Create #COVIDSafeZones at College Game Days

Public health officials, national leaders and higher education organizations provide recommendations for encouraging vaccine uptake with college sports. Sporting events can be #COVIDSafeZones as teams and universities work to maximize vaccinations among students, athletes and fans.

COVID Collaborative

Power 5 commissioners join COVID Collaborative to encourage vaccination

Commissioners of the Power 5 conferences joined the COVID Collaborative in encouraging students and student-athletes to get vaccinated, they announced in a statement released Thursday.

The Athletic Staff Image credit: Sean Gardner via Getty Images

A National Call For College COVID Safe Zones: How Higher Education Leaders Can Accelerate America’s Vaccination Push — and Keep Their Campuses Open

As students return to colleges and universities this fall, the highly communicable Delta variant of COVID-19 creates unexpected challenges to keep campuses safe and open.

Dr. Mark McClellan, Andy Slavitt, and John Bridgeland Image credit: Via Getty

Bipartisan Group of Leaders and Health Experts Urge Institutions of Higher Education to Establish #COVIDSafeZones

In a new letter provided by the COVID Collaborative to America's institutions of higher education, a bipartisan group of leaders, public health experts, higher education experts, and former officials from multiple administrations are seeking the help of college and university leaders to require vaccinations where possible and take steps to keep their campus communities safe and prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Courtesy of COVID Collaborative

Resources to Help Schools Promote COVID-19 Vaccination

To support vaccination efforts, PHCC and the COVID Collaborative have created social media messages and shareable graphics for school administrators, educators, and staff with resources created or curated by the CDC.

White House makes new push to get students vaccinated against COVID-19

The White House, worried that coronavirus vaccination rates among young people are lagging behind as the new school year approaches, unveiled Thursday a new push to get students their shots, including enlisting pediatricians to incorporate vaccination into back-to-school sports physicals and encouraging schools to host their own vaccination clinics.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg

The White House, concerned about rates among young people, makes a new push for students to get shots.

In remarks to the nation last week, Mr. Biden called for every school district in the country to host at least one pop-up vaccination clinic, and many schools and school districts — particularly those in urban areas — are already doing so. The Covid Collaborative, a bipartisan group of politicians and policymakers, has also been working with the White House to promote school-based clinics.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg Image credit: Kevin Mohatt for the New York Times

White House Makes Back-to-School Push for Student Vaccinations

With vaccination rates lagging among young people, the administration wants to incorporate vaccination into school sports physicals and is asking schools to host vaccine clinics.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg Image credit: James Estrin/The New York Times

More than Two Dozen Leading Business Groups and Public Health Organizations Call on Employers to Reduce Barriers for Working Parents Who Want to Vaccinate their Children Against COVID-19

Health Action Alliance leads a coordinated campaign to help stop the spread of COVID-19, support the safer reopening of schools and reduce worker absenteeism

Health Action Alliance

The Week in COVID & Schools: UNICEF Calls For Reopening Schools, a New Roadmap to Kickstart the Education Recovery & 14 More Key Updates

This week’s briefing on COVID-19 and schools presents the evidence for reopening safely and details how COVID is fueling education reform.

John Bailey

Will schools and day cares require masks or COVID-19 vaccines in fall 2021?

As most American schools and daycares prepare to reopen this fall, unhurried national guidance promises a wide variety of protocols across locations. What policies are different states and districts establishing, and how will schools handle vaccinations for their staff and students?

Erin Richards and Alla Wong

Remote Learning Is Not Going Away Soon. This Is How to Make It Better.

With this latest—and largest—surge of coronavirus infections in the United States, K-12 schools that hadn’t yet reopened for in-person learning now see few paths to do so in the near term, and many of the schools that were offering some face-to-face instruction are now pulling back into full-time remote learning.

Emily Tate Image credit: Allison Shelley for American Education: Images of Teachers and Students in Action

Get Involved

Subscribe to get updates about the work of COVID Collaborative.

If you are looking for safe ways to serve during this time, we recommend visiting the All for Good Volunteer Hub, created by Points of Light: www.allforgood.org.