San Diego Survivor Seminar and Good Grief Camp
As we move through the grief journey, we realize that changes provide perspective, and perspective drives purpose. Find new perspective, a sense of purpose and the support of peers at our brand new seminars.
We urge you to take three days out of the grind of grief work and the stresses of daily life to fellowship with your TAPS family.
Our new format will help you personalize your experience. Some of us are at a place where we want to tell the story of what happened, and we need to grieve safely, openly and deeply. Some of us need to talk, some need to listen and some don't feel comfortable participating with words. Some of us are struggling to figure out how grief looks many years down the road — how to reconcile how our families have changed and are still changing. Some of us need to lean into life, to take better care of ourselves, to move our bodies, to get out and do things and to connect with the people with whom we feel the closest.
Think of TAPS Seminars as a gathering place where all of that, and more, is possible. Think of them as tools for building your compassion for yourself and others, your capacity to grieve and to heal, and your confidence.
We've changed our seminars, and change waits for you there, too.
Though their lives are marked by grief, young survivors at TAPS know their lives will also be marked by camaraderie, mentorship, emotional maturity, adventure and fun.
Led by experts in the fields of child development, mental health and education, TAPS Youth Programs provide safe spaces for military children to explore grief and embrace healing.
At TAPS Seminars, this takes the form of Good Grief Camps where children are able to share and learn coping skills through games, crafts and other activities in a fun and supportive environment. Each child is paired with a military mentor who serves as a "big brother" or "big sister" and reminds the child that he or she is still a part of the military community.
Our weekend together begins with a casual reception during registration from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday. Don’t worry if you’re arriving later than this; we’ll be there waiting for you with hugs. Friday evening will be informal — you'll be able to meet other survivors and get a feel for what to expect. Whether you're relieved to be back with your TAPS family or feeling hesitant and overwhelmed, you'll have the chance to take a breath and know we've got you.
We have a full program on Saturday, with informative workshops, sharing groups and meals enjoyed together. On Sunday, we’ll continue our sessions in the morning and conclude the seminar with a wonderful Sunday lunch, including a performance by our special celebrity guest, country music singer Shane Owens.
Update: Many attendees have told us they need to get home on Sunday evening to prepare for school and work on Monday. To make sure everyone has the chance to participate fully, our goal is to conclude events by 3 p.m. on Sunday so you can leisurely enjoy the last day with your TAPS family and travel back home in time for work and school on Monday.
If you have already requested a hotel room for Sunday night but would like to make a change to your schedule to depart on Sunday, please contact Danitza James at firstname.lastname@example.org before Nov. 24, and she’ll be happy to update your reservation. If you check out on Sunday, we will have a place to safely store your luggage until your departure.
Staying through Sunday? You will have the evening free to relax and enjoy the area on your own. We will have information to help you plan your evening, including nearby restaurant recommendations for dinner.
FRIDAY, Dec. 1
3 p.m. to 7 p.m. — Check-in and Reception
SATURDAY, Dec. 2
8 a.m. - 9 a.m. — Breakfast
9 a.m. - 10 a.m. — Opening Session
9 a.m. - 5 p.m. — Good Grief Camp
10 a.m. - 4 p.m. — Your choice of workshops and activities
6 p.m. - 8 p.m. — Family dinner and remembrance activities
SUNDAY, Dec. 3
8 a.m. to 12 p.m. — Peer Mentor Training
TAPS will be holding a peer mentor training for adult survivors who are at least 18 months beyond their own loss and are ready to be there for others. You'll be able to sign up for peer mentor training during the registration process. To learn more about peer mentoring, visit the TAPS Peer Mentors page.
8 a.m. - 9 a.m. — Breakfast
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. — Your choice of workshops and activities, Good Grief Camp, closing lunch
There are no registration fees for this seminar. Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, TAPS is able to provide lodging, all meals, materials, activities and T-shirts at no cost to you. All you have to do is register, keep us updated on your plans, and know we're going to meet you wherever you are on your grief journey.
Lodging will be provided at the Bahia Resort Hotel for all those attending on a first come, first served basis on Friday through Monday. TAPS covers the cost of lodging at no cost to you, and we will take care of booking your hotel room for the weekend.
Because we want you to be able to participate fully in the Sunday activities, you'll have the option to stay at the hotel on Sunday night. This will allow you time to unwind and enter your "regular life" feeling refreshed and renewed.