A fantastic evening launching Student Grief Networks’ “Touching Palms with Grief” Exhibition


One of the most memorable events I have been to in a long time

Rebecca Pirt - ALMT Trust Director

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In 2022, the ALMT funded a creative project with the Student Grief Network and The New Normal Charity.  For many students, starting university can be tremendously problematic as feelings of loss can re-surface and lead to difficulties with engagement.  Despite grief being acknowledged as “highly stressful, with mental, emotional, physical, social, practical and financial impacts”, only 1/90 of the studied universities offered dedicated bereavement support and a third do not even mention bereavement on their website. This project aimed to work with students who had experienced a bereavement and develop creative tools which would enable better conversations about grief and bereavement.  By widening the conversation, raising the profile of the issue and developing creative resources, the Student Grief Network hopes to reduce drop-out rates and increase access to relevant support and help.

Last week, I had the privilege of representing the ALMT and attending the launch of the ’Touching Palms with Grief’ exhibition at St Margarets House  in East London.  The evening started with a short film created by Anna May and  Sam Mathias Stanley called Floating on Blue.  This evocative piece was extremely powerful and everyone present was affected by the subject matter.  For me, it definitely made me much more aware about the need for this work and the subsequent Question and Answer session continued to explore just how important it is to broaden conversations about loss.  It was a truly memorable evening and will influence the way I approach this topic in the future.

The exhibition at St Margaret’s House is well worth a visit and runs until 20th May in the Gallery Café.  More details can be found here.

Written by Rebecca Pirt – ALMT Trust Director