Specialist Panel: COVID-19, Grief, Loss and Bereavement

Specialist Panel: COVID-19, Grief, Loss and Bereavement
Type: Webinar
Date: Tuesday, 12th May, 2020
Specialist Panel: Dr. Rob Gordon, Associate Professor Lauren Breen and Michelle Roberts
Level: Intermediate
Audience: Grief and Loss practitioners, managers and workers in community service programs, counsellors and anyone working with communities affected by lockdown and isolation.


Webinar Overview: How COVID-19 is changing the way we experience loss, grief and bereavement.  

With profound changes to funeral practices, record-breaking job losses and increasing physical isolation; children, families and communities are grappling to make sense of these seismic changes in their lives. 

With the COVID-19 crisis producing distress and anxiety through our communities, it is going to cause unprecedented reactions across the world in relation to grief and bereavement. Made up of three specialist panellists, this webinar will provide viewers with an overview of the effects of COVID-19 on children, families and the community. The panellists will also provide information on practical applications for viewers.

Learning Outcomes: at the conclusion of this webinar, participants should be able to:


1. Understand the importance of child agency as a way to strengthen children's ability to cope with and adapt to the challenges of disaster and pandemic. What does research tell us?
2. Learn ways to work with children in their experience of the challenges, losses, fears and new normal of the pandemic.


1. Identify the challenging issues facing family members during and after a pandemic
2. Identify a range of strategies that can be used to support people and families who have experienced a death as a result of COVID-19


1. Understand and be able to offer simple techniques for managing strong emotions within a community that has experienced loss as a result of COVID-19 or disruption of their support patterns.
2. Understand the impact and consequences of both grief and trauma in the care of people and communities facing such difficult losses and the associated disrupted social life.
3. Have strategies for working therapeutically with individuals and communities experiencing grief and trauma reactions to isolation and disruption
4. Identify the key issues stemming from multiple losses from isolation and lockdown within a community
4. Increase confidence in working with individuals within a community that has been affected by these issues

Presenter Bio's: listed below:

Michelle Roberts:
Children and Adolescents

Michelle Roberts is a psychologist, teacher and child disaster consultant. Michelle is a founding member of The Australian Child & Adolescent Trauma, Loss and Grief Network (ACATLGN). Michelle has led projects in Child Centred Disaster Resilience Education (CC-DRE) with the Australian Institute of Disaster Resilience, as part of Disaster Resilient Australia-New Zealand School Education Network (DRANZSEN) and as a member of the steering committee.Michelle has responded to disasters both nationally and internationally across a range of events, working for both government and non-government agencies and has provided support and advice in relation to children and young people, trauma, adversity and disasters. Michelle is now a Senior Psychologist with the Barrington Centre. 

Dr Rob Gordon: Communities

Rob Gordon PhD is a clinical psychologist who has worked in the area of disaster and trauma for 40 years, he is a consultant to the Victorian Government and Australian Red Cross for emergency recovery.  In addition to natural disasters since Ash Wednesday in 1983, he has provided advice to recovery programs following most major events in Victoria and many in the rest of Australia.  He has researched social processes evoked by disaster and the community resilience in recovery processes.  

He conducts a private psychotherapy practice in Box Hill Victoria where he treats people affected by trauma and disaster as well as adolescents and young adults in group psychotherapy.

He is president of the Australasian Confederation of Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy and the Director of Training for the Australian Association of Group Psychotherapists.

Associate Professor Lauren Breen: Families

Lauren is an Associate Professor in the School of Psychology, Curtin University, Perth, Western Australia. Lauren's PhD thesis on bereavement won the 2007 Australian Psychological Society’s Psychology of Relationships Interest Group Thesis Award. She was successful in the inaugural round of the prestigious Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Research Awards for her project on family caregiving and bereavement. She has authored 15 book chapters, over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles, and has received over $2million in research funding. Lauren is a Registered Psychologist, a Fellow of The Australian Psychological Society,a Fellow in Thanatology: Death, Dying and Bereavement, and a member of the International Work Group on Death, Dying and Bereavement. She is the Managing Editor of Death Studies and a Board Member of the Australian Centre for Grief and Bereavement.
Date: Tuesday, 12th May 2020

3.00pm - 4.30pm AEST
2.30pm - 4.00pm ACST
1.00pm - 2.30pm AWST

Not in Australia? Use this link to know your time to watch live: https://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/converter.html 

If you're unable to attend at the scheduled time but you would still like to purchase this webinar please register and regardless of attendance at the scheduled time you will be sent a recording of the webinar to view at your leisure. This recording will remain available for three months.


$50.00 ACGB Members
$75.00 Non ACGB Members

Cancellation policy:

The Australian Centre for Grief and Bereavement reserves the right to cancel education programs that do not achieve minimum participation, in which case all fees will be refunded. Registration cancellations will not be accepted unless made in writing to the centre. Cancellations made more than thirty (30) days prior to the event date will be refunded less 25% of the registration fee to cover administration costs. No registration refunds will be made after this date. Please note: The full invoiced amount will still be payable in the event of non-attendance on the day.

Terms and Conditions: 

ACGB's program and program content is copyrighted. Its use and dissemination is restricted and unauthorised duplication is prohibited. Viewers agree to use the product under the purchase agreement terms, which restrict number of viewers based on registration type. Individual Registration - Provides one person, the registrant, access to the webcast or DVD for personal viewing. Multi-Viewer Registration - Provides one person, the registrant, access to the webcast for streaming from one computer to a group of people or the DVD for viewing at one location. CE Credits for this program may only be obtained through ACGB. CE instructions will be provided to the registered contact for the organisation (or to the registered individual) prior to the live air date and to attendees at the end of the program.


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