About the programme
Matika aims to support the participants in their journey through loss and grief, after experiencing the death of a loved one and has a resilience-building and a trauma-informed approach.
Overview of Matika
- It is an eight-session, weekly programme that runs during the school term.
- It is a therapeutic and psychoeducational programme, which is co-facilitated by two trained and experienced counsellors.
- The facilitators alternate their role from session to session, and they lead different activities during each session, ensuring that one facilitator guides discussion while the other facilitators are responsive to the group’s needs.
- The participants are clustered by age range in two groups: one group is for 6–10-year-olds and one is for 11–15-year-olds. Both groups will address the same issues and they have the same therapeutic goals, but the sessions differ in the proposed activities.
- It is a closed programme, and the sessions are limited to small numbers to maximise individualised attention. Both groups can welcome up to 10 participants each.
- Participants can be referred by a counsellor or other therapist, their school, their GP or they can be self-referred.
Goals of Matika
The programme supports the participants by:
- Normalising the experience of losing a loved one.
- Developing a sense of belonging by connecting with others who have a shared experience.
- Creating a safe space to externalise and process their feelings related to their experience of losing a loved one, mainly through art and play.
- Providing psychoeducation in identifying different expressions of their grief.
- Developing healthy ways of managing intense feelings.
- Encouraging them to identify, build and tap into their inner resources to adjust to change.
- Encouraging them to connect with others to build a support network.
- Helping them to identify personal factors and other resources that may contribute to their resilience.
After completing the eight-week programme, the tamariki and rangatahi will:
- Understand how grief and loss happen differently to each person, but they are experienced by all.
- Feel connected to their loved ones who have passed in a different way.
- Be able to identify their feelings and emotions, validating them and expressing them in a healthy way.
- Have a range of practical ideas for managing difficult feelings.
- Be able to tap into their internal or external resources when experiencing challenging times.
- Be able to ask for help or support from their whānau