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Highmark Caring Place and Sweetwater Center for the Arts partner to exhibit children’s art created to help grieve the loss of a loved one

PITTSBURGH (Aug. 19, 2015) — For the first time ever, art created by grieving children through programs at the Highmark Caring Place, A Center for Grieving Children, Adolescents and Their Families, will be publicly exhibited, thanks to a partnership with Sweetwater Center for the Arts in Sewickley, Pa. The Caring Place is a Pennsylvania-based organization that provides free programs to address the needs of children that have experienced the death of a loved one, often using art as a means of expression.

The exhibition, called "A Journey Through Grief: Artwork by the Children of the Highmark Caring Place," opens with a reception on Saturday, Aug. 22 from 5-7 p.m. and runs through Sept. 18.

"Through their art, the Caring Place children have found a way to create beauty and meaning in the midst of their pain and to commemorate the loss of someone important to them," said Highmark Caring Place Director Terese Vorsheck. "Grief is something that can affect us all, and we are thankful to the Sweetwater Center for the Arts for allowing us this opportunity to share the children's feelings, thoughts and memories in this public forum."

The Caring Place provides peer support groups, referral services, adult telephone support and educational programs and resources for grieving children and families in four Pennsylvania facilities as well as online. The Caring Place's consultation services, educational presentations and resources are available for schools and other professionals in the community who work with children. All services at the Caring Place are provided at no cost.

"Sweetwater is so thrilled to be working with Highmark Caring Place to present this important exhibition that demonstrates how art can be a vital tool for understanding how we experience grief," said Sweetwater Center for the Arts Executive Director Michelle Peters.

"Our mission is to enrich the lives of the children and adults in the communities that we serve, and this is a real opportunity to show people the ways in which art can be therapeutic and a mechanism to teach us about ourselves."

Sweetwater began as a grass-roots effort developed by community residents. It offered a small number of classes in the fine arts and crafts for residents in the area west of Pittsburgh. After receiving nonprofit and certified teaching institute status in 1974, Sweetwater began operating as a full-service arts education facility in 1975 when Sweetwater opened its doors. In 1987, Sweetwater moved from a small Victorian house into its current space, located in the old Sewickley Post Office building, where it is uniquely situated on the periphery of Pittsburgh with easy access to many areas that do not traditionally have access to quality cultural programs.

For more information about the Caring Place and to learn how you can volunteer to help grieving children, go to To learn more about Sweetwater Center for the Arts, go to


David Misner
Highmark Health

Nichole Remmert
Sweetwater Center for the Arts