Support Groups

BTF Vilomah Companions

We are very excited to announce the launching of our BTF Vilomah Companion program. A volunteer program where an existing BTF parent will be the contact for a new family.

In our search to find the word to represent parents who have lost a child, we found Tim May’s article entitled “Vilomah: Meaning and Origin of a Powerful Word”, he explains that a Duke University Professor, Professor Holloway, began using the word. Vilomah means “against a natural order.” Professor Holloway began using the term when she discovered there was no English word that gave meaning to a parent whose child had died.”

When we first connect with a new family, we determine & assist with their immediate needs but our mission is to provide support to our families throughout their grief journey which we all know is forever. That is where our BTF Vilomah Companion program comes in. Our Companions will stay in touch with their BTF parent consistently, meet in person if desired, check in on important dates (child birthdate, date they passed), etc.

This program enables our existing BTF parents an opportunity to help others now going thru what they themselves went thru when they lost their own child and is an important part of fulfilling our mission to support all of the families we serve.

BTF Grandparents

Chaired by Mickey Heyl, Brandon’s Gram

BTF Grandparents, our Grandparents Group, is designed to bring together the Grandparents for the families we serve.  Within this group, Grandparents feel the bond and enjoy each other’s company.  While they share their losses, they also find themselves laughing which surprised them all.  Members get together in a variety of ways where and how they feel comfortable.  Our closed Facebook group provides members the ability to speak freely about their grief and struggles.

“As Grandparents we deal with double loss – the loss our children are going through and our grief for the loss of our Grandchild.  We welcome all Grandparents who feel they need this understanding.” – Mickey 

Grandparents of our families can join the group simply reach out to Mickey on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/mickey.heyl or via at mickey@brandontolsonfoundation.org. She will then invite them to join the closed Facebook group and keep them abreast of their get togethers.