At some point in all of our lives, we will be met with the loss of a loved one.

In the time afterwards, there are tools available to grieve and mourn that loss.

On Tuesday April 3 and Wednesday April 4, Hospice of the Prairie will host Dr. Alan D. Wolfelt, an author, educator and grief counselor from Fort Collins, Colorado, who will be giving two presentations at the Knights of Columbus in Dodge City.

"I wrote my first book when I was 19 about the needs of children experiencing loss," Wolfelt said on Thursday. "I experienced my own loss and hearing people say 'Keep your chin up' and things of that nature made no sense to me."

Wolfelt has gone on to write more than 50 books and has run his own practice for the past 35 years on grief at the Center for Loss and Life Transition.

"I tour about 60-70 cities a year across the world," Wolfelt said. "I am motivated to inspire people and be a formal advocate for children, adults and families and to get them help with grief and loss."

Wolfelt says he splits his time between his practice, touring and book writing.

"I have a book due out May 1," he said. "It is about the natural complications of grief which is a sub-topic of what I will be discussing when I come to Dodge City."

The April 3 presentation, Exploring Death, Grief and Mourning, will be focused on anyone in the public that is experiencing grief in their lives.

This presentation will be free and open to the public.

The April 4 presentation, Exploring the Special Features of Sudden Death, Suicide Grief and Trauma Loss, is aimed more towards the professional community members and caregivers that support the bereaved.

The community members range from nurses, psychologists, counselors, social workers, chaplains and other health care professionals.

There will be a $75 fee for the April 4 presentation that includes a breakfast, lunch and presentation materials.

For anyone wishing to attend the April 4 presentation who is not a health care professional, you are still welcome to attend but the fee will be required.

"It is important for people to come out," Wolfelt said. "We must learn and embrace our grief.

"Grief is what you think and feel on the inside, and mourning is when you express grief on the outside.

"You can talk to someone five years later and they are still just as miserable as when the loss occurred so people need to be able to mourn."

The April 3 grief presentation will be from 7 to 9 p.m. and the April 4 presentation will be from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

The deadline registration to attend the April 4 presentation is March 20.

To register for the April 4 presentation, contact Hospice of the Prairie at 620-227-7209 to receive a brochure.

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