Rainbows

Starfish Family Resources is proud to train community based volunteers to run the Rainbows™ peer support program in their community agencies.

What is Rainbows?

Rainbows is an internationally acclaimed peer-support program offered free of charge to children and families, to help them cope with grief due to divorce, separation, death or abandonment. Rainbows promotes emotional healing by giving participants the opportunity to share their feelings and grieve their loss within a safe, caring setting, with peers who are experiencing a similar transition. The program, started by Suzy Yehl-Marta in 1983, has helped millions of children in 18 countries.

The Rainbows Programs

When a change takes place in the family, whether it is death, divorce, separation or abandonment, it has a profound effect on all its members. Grief is both an expression of love, and a normal human reaction to a significant loss. If it isn’t healed at the appropriate time, its impact can be destructive.

The aim of Rainbows is to assist these grieving children, adolescents and adults to develop a belief in their own goodness and the value of their family. It teaches that each change in life is an occasion for a new beginning. The goal of the support group, which is led by trained volunteers, is to assist participants in expressing and understanding their feelings, accepting what has happened, and experiencing a sense of belonging and love.

Evaluations received from Rainbows participants and parents have shown a 53% increase in the children’s self-esteem, a positive correlation with academic achievement and a 75% decrease in absenteeism from school.

Where can I find a program near me?

Rainbows runs in a variety of community based settings like churches, schools or community agencies. We always recommend that you first check with your school to see if they are a registered site and running programs that will work for your child. Otherwise, please check our map of active sites for a Rainbows program near you. 

Starfish Family Resources and Rainbows

Starfish Family Resources supports Rainbows in Alberta, by partnering with over 110 sites in 30 communities. Starfish helps new Rainbows sites to start up, as well as provides ongoing support, which includes training coordinators and facilitators. Our partners provide Rainbows to over 1,000 children every year, in schools, churches and other agencies. Please call us if you would like to bring Rainbows to your community; we will be glad to help you set it up.

Facilitator Training and Site Licensing

Starfish Family Resources provides training workshops for Rainbows Facilitators and Coordinators for Alberta program sites several times per year. Workshops are facilitated by our certified Rainbows Registered Directors.