The Compassionate Friends

Providing Grief Support After the Death of a Child

The Compassionate Friends is about transforming the pain of grief into the path of hope. It takes people out of the isolation society imposes on the bereaved and lets them express their grief naturally. With the shedding of tears, healing comes. And the newly bereaved get to see people who have survived and are learning to live and love again.

Simon Stephens, founder of The Compassionate Friends

Friendship, Understanding, Hope


The Compassionate Friends was founded over 40 years ago when a chaplain at the Warwickshire Hospital in England brought together two sets of grieving parents and realized that the support they gave each other was better than anything he, as a chaplain, could ever say or provide. Meeting around a kitchen table, the Lawleys and the Hendersons were joined by a bereaved mother and the chaplain, Simon Stephens, and The Society of the Compassionate Friends was born. The Compassionate Friends jumped across the ocean and was established in the United States and incorporated in 1978 in Illinois.

Each chapter, along with the supporting National Office, is committed to helping every bereaved parent, sibling, or grandparent who may walk through our doors or contact us. The National Office has national and regional upcoming events.

Today TCF has about 600 chapters serving all 50 states plus Washington D.C., Puerto Rico, and Guam offer friendship, understanding, and hope to bereaved parents, siblings, grandparents, and other family members during the natural grieving process after a child has died. Around the world more than 30 countries have a Compassionate Friends presence, encircling the globe with support so desperately needed when the worst has happened.


The Compassionate Friends • Central Iowa Chapter


Our Mission

When a child dies, at any age, the family suffers intense pain and may feel hopeless and isolated. The Compassionate Friends provides highly personal comfort, hope, and support to every family experiencing the death of a son or a daughter, a brother or a sister, or a grandchild, and helps others better assist the grieving family.

Chapter Meetings

Our Chapter meets the first Tuesday of each month. Meetings start at 7pm and generally last two hours.

Chapter Newsletter

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News & Events

December Meeting CHANGE

Posted on November 17, 2020

On December 1st at 7:00 we will be meeting via Zoom for our Annual Chapter Candle Lighting Program.

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Grief Symposium

Posted on October 11, 2020

Death and grief are common human experiences, yet these experiences tend to be different for every individual. As a result, Hamilton's Academy of Grief & Loss offers a wide variety of resources available to you and your family as you begin to work through your grief.

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Walk to Remember 2020

Posted on September 27, 2020

MercyOne's Walk to Remember

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Speaking Grief

Posted on August 26, 2020

Iowa PBS Virtual Film--Speaking Grief


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TCF Meeting Update

Posted on July 06, 2020

Meeting Update for July 7th

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Posted on June 11, 2020

Thank you to all who completed our survey last month requesting feedback about conference alternatives due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. We had over 1,000 responses with overwhelming support for TCF to offer the safer option of a virtual national conference this year. Since that time, we have been working diligently to evaluate the possibility of organizing a virtual conference.

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Posted on June 11, 2020

Posted on the TCF National Website

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2020 TCF National Conference CANCELED

Posted on April 24, 2020

A few weeks ago, we wrote to you to share how The Compassionate Friends (TCF) is responding to the Coronavirus pandemic and the challenges it has presented for our national conference this summer in Atlanta, GA. Since that time, we have been watching national developments and considering the many issues surrounding our ability to hold the conference in July.

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43rd TCF National Conference UPDATE

Posted on April 16, 2020


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April 7th Meeting Cancelled due to public gathering guildlines

Posted on March 20, 2020

During this hectic and uncertain time, we encourage you all to be compassionate with yourselves and others.

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