Peace by Piece marks 25years of a unique partnership with JFS and Edmarc

by | Feb 29, 2024 | JFS, Other News

February marked the 25th anniversary of Peace by Piece, a partnership between Jewish Family Service of Tidewater and Edmarc, a family-centered home health and hospice for children with life-threatening illnesses.

Peace by Piece is an interfaith program for grieving children and teens. Participants are assigned to age-appropriate groups led by trained volunteer facilitators and are able to process their experiences related to loss while providing support to one another through therapeutic activities, games, and crafts.

JFS is a collaborative partner to the Edmarc program with Edmarc raising all funds for this free service.

“Kids can feel isolated when something about them feels different. Peace by Piece gives them a safe place to talk,” says Debbie Mayer, director of clinical services at JFS.

“Grief is a natural part of life. All people are capable of processing grief with the right support in the right setting,” adds Mayer. “We change people’s lives.”

Peace by Piece does not define the relationship of a loved one. In most cases, it’s a parent who has died, but a child can also grieve the loss of a teacher, nanny, or sibling.
The model is not time-limited, either; groups are open-ended, so people can get what they need. One young woman has been attending Peace by Piece for seven years.

“Over the past 25 years, the collaboration between Edmarc and Jewish Family Service has been nothing short of extraordinary. Together, we have worked tirelessly to provide Peace by Piece . . . to those in need,” says Deborah Stitzer-Brame, Edmarc’s executive director.
“Our collective efforts have had a profound and positive impact on our community, offering solace and support during challenging times.

“It is with great pride and gratitude that we reflect on the amazing journey we have embarked upon, and we look forward to continuing our partnership in bringing comfort and healing to those who need it most,” she says.

For information on how to connect a grieving child or teen and their family with this free program, contact Debbie Mayer, LCSW, at