CruzKids is our unique project to let bereaved children and young people meet with others who have also experienced a significant death. This can help children and young people realise that they are not alone in that there are other people their again who have also experienced bereavement at a young age.

We have monthly meet-ups throughout the school year, keeping-in-touch sessions over the summer as well as a range of annual events for children, young people and their families.

Children and young people have usually had one-to-one support before joining the CruzKids group. If you'd like any further information about CruzKids, please contact us.

Monthly meet-ups

During the school year, we have monthly CruzKids meet-ups.

Our primary school-aged group (CruzKids Juniors) usually meets at the Cruse office and have a different art and craft project along with time to chat and play.

Our secondary school-aged group usually meets somewhere in Douglas for a tea, coffee, or hot chocolate and have a catch-up about school, jobs, exams, and life in general.

Venture Centre weekend

We've held a residential weekend at the Venture Centre every September since 2007. The weekend is a highlight of the year for many of our CruzKids (and the Cruse volunteers and staff who go along as well).

The Venture Centre group from 2022 standing in front of the dorms wearing their purple hoodies

The Venture Centre weekend is open to any CruzKids aged nine and above.

The weekend is all about having fun, learning new skills, gaining independence and resilience, but also spending time with others of a similar age with similar experience.

The activities over the weekend change every year but always include a variety of outdoor group activities like abseiling, archery, gorge walking, raft building, kayaking, beach games and many other things.

Every year, some of our previous CruzKids who are now young adults are there as well to act as mentors and offer support for newer CruzKids. This is always really popular with everyone and is a huge benefit to everyone.

Every year, we have a different coloured CruzKids hoodie so that everyone can feel part of the group, can stay warm if it gets chilly in the evening, and can remember the weekend afterwards.

The Venture Centre group from 2022 standing in front of the dorms wearing their blue hoodies

The CruzKids staff and volunteers from the 2020 Venture weekend

Christmas Party

Our Christmas party lets children and families get together for snacks and games. In the past, we've done ten-pin bowling, roller-skating, arts and crafts and one time even had a visit from a mini-reindeer.

A collage from our recent CruzKids Christmas parties

Family Day

Our annual family day in the summer lets our CruzKids children and young people and their families come together for a sunny day out with nature, animals, arts and crafts, and good food and company.

Children feeding a donkey who is pointing its snout out a gap in the gate.

Families sitting at tables together working on family art projects.

July Jamboree

We want to enjoy the summer as much as possible, so we all agreed to have another summer family get-together. The jamboree is usually at the Manx Fun Farm in the evening, where the children can meet up and play on all the game outdoor games like the bucking bronco, sumo suits, bouncy castle obstacle course and the giant velcro football dart board. The older children and parents and carers can just sit and chat and enjoy the sun. Or play the games as well. There's snacks and food laid on for everyone.

A boy riding a bucking bronco and a girl watching him.Both ar smiling and have their arms up in the air.

Two boys kicking footballs at a giant velcro dartboard.

Two girls sitting on the edge of a bouncy castle and taking their shoes off (or putting them back on maybe, I'm not sure)

A girl riding the bucking bronco and trying not to fall off.

A group of boys sitting at a table looking shattered and smiling for the camera.

A girl running and about to kick a football up into the air.

Summer keeping-in-touch sessions

In the summer holidays, we hold some keeping-in-touch sessions so that everyone can stay in touch while school is out. We try to take advantage of the weather for these sessions and have activities outdoors in places like a beach, a glen, or park.

A collage of photos of children playing at various summer events.

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