project doing good, bacc, bay area christian church, usa

History of Kara


Mission & Vision
Kara’s mission is to provide grief support for children, teens, families and adults. Our guiding value is empathy. Every day we provide compassion and support to children and adults impacted by loss and grief. Our vision is to see people of all ages compassionately supported on their journey through grief so they can move toward renewed hope and meaning. Our clients include those who are grieving a death as well as those managing a terminal illness (their own or another’s).

Kara’ s founding is rooted in the early 1970s, when a growing awareness swept through the United States, England and other countries that the way contemporary society handled death, based in the medical establishment, was inadequate. The seminal work of Dr. Elizabeth Kubler-Ross and the emerging hospice movement stimulated discussions about death and dying in Palo Alto and other communities. During this same period, Dr. Charles Garfield established the Shanti Project in San Francisco to train and engage volunteers to serve and support dying patients. Palo Alto Projects, modeled after the Shanti Model of Peer Support, was incorporated in December 1976, with 17 peer counselor volunteers. In February of 1978 the organization’s name was officially changed to Kara to more accurately reflect its grief support focused mission. Today, our staff and over 150 trained volunteers serve and support those who are grieving in our community. Kara does not espouse a particular religion or philosophy. We encourage those we serve to draw strength from their own personal spiritual beliefs, family, friends and other community resources to build sustaining support.

Helpful Articles For Adults:

  • Coping with Grief and Loss – Understanding the Process
  • Facing Sudden Loss.pdf
  • Grief & the Holidays.pdf
  • Helping Yourself Heal When Someone Loved Dies.pdf
  • Holiday Survivorship Skills.pdf
  • How to Help Someone Who is Grieving
  • Kindness To Self.pdf
  • Keys to Good Listening.pdf
  • Realistic Expectations
  • Loving Kindness Practice.pdf
  • Prayer for the Grieving.pdf
  • Sudden Death vs. Anticipatory Death.pdf
  • Supporting a Grieving Person 
  • The Health Benefits of Tears
  • The Journey Through Grief.pdf
  • Helpful Articles On Grief For Teens

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