Danbury's Healing Hearts Center for Children and Families helps families cope with loss

The family of a toddler who died in a hot car encouraged loved ones to donate to the center.

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DANBURY - News 12 Connecticut visited a health center in Danbury that specializes in helping children and families cope with the loss of a loved one.

After the death of a 15-month-old boy in Ridgefield, who died after police say he was left in a hot car, his family asked in his obituary for loved ones to make donations of toy balls to the center. The Healing Hearts Center for Children and Families says it cannot talk about the recent donation or any of its clients, but says it is fully funded by donations.

The nonprofit is part of the Regional Hospice and Home Care of Western Connecticut and was founded in 1995 to help grieving children. The center now offers more than 30 different programs, support groups and workshops for both children and adults. Social workers and volunteer grief counselors work with families in group settings about handling death. Toys, like the donated balls, and art projects are provided for children.

The center is open free of charge to anyone. It recently received a $1.2 million state grant and is building a bigger facility in Danbury.

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