SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. (WMC) - A new resource will soon be available to teens in Shelby County who have been impacted by crime or violence.
The Crime Victims and Rape Crisis Center (CVRCC) is creating grief counseling groups that will start at the beginning of the new year.
CVRCC Director Sandy Bromley said that in 2018 there were 184 homicides in Memphis.
“That’s not just 184 families, it’s loved ones, friends, cousins -- they are all impacted by these homicides,” she said.
Maggie Thompson, a homicide response counselor said she sees the effects these tragedies can have on teenagers firsthand.
“It’s already hard enough being in school, bullying, keeping up with current trends and social media -- I can’t even imagine,” she said. “But to add in something as complicated as a parent or loved one being murdered, it’s just unimaginable some of the feelings they may have."
Thompson said often times the teens will feel alone or blame themselves.
Her hope with the grief group is that teens from ages 13-17 will come together to heal.
“Kind of normalizes what's going on while validating it -- saying ‘no you're not alone, you're not going crazy’ – these are real symptoms you're experiencing and you have support and others going through something similar,” said Thompson.
The group will be held every other Tuesday for two months beginning in January.
“Then we will see how things are going and reassess how often they need to hold it and what is a convenient location for people,” said Bromley.
The first session will be held at the CVRCC headquarters off Madison near downtown.
The services are free to everyone.