Our Story Begins with Bethany Anne Traviesa 

The Bethany Center of Good Shepherd Hospice, founded in 1991, is named in honor of Bethany Anne Traviesa.

When Bethany was dying of cancer she was concerned that her children

have a safe place to share their feelings and receive support. 

Providing a special place for children and teens to understand their grief, 

Good Shepherd Hospice Bethany Center is a place of hope and healing.

The caring and professionally trained staff and volunteers are dedicated to

providing compassionate grief support to children their families.

Services are offered at no charge to children and families.

How We Can Help 

Grief is a normal response to a death, for someone of any age. While we all may feel sadness at this time, it is important to work toward a healthy acceptance of the death of our loved one, while we go on to create joy in the days ahead. 

Children and teens experience loss of a loved one just as deeply as adults do- perhaps more so. Understanding their feelings and helping them cope effectively with their grief is essential in developing healthy emotional and mental framework for adulthood. 

The Bethany Center of Good Shepherd Hospice offers a number of counseling programs designed to address the ongoing needs of children, teens and families suffering the loss or the terminal illness of a loved one. Individual counseling is available, as well as group workshops for various ages and family members.

Our Mission, Goals, & Values

Our center promotes the understanding of grief through education and advocacy in the community. The Bethany Center offers the following:

  • Children and family support groups: Available to adults, teens and children to help facilitate healthy grief work through sharing and creative self-expression. Inside the Bethany Center’s activity rooms, feelings are expressed through art, games and dramatic play.
  • Grief Cave: Children are able to write personal messages on the walls of this unique space where their words glow in the dark.
  • Camp Brave Heart: Annual spring camp for children ages 6 to 16 who live in Polk, Highlands or Hardee counties.

To learn more about the Bethany Center and the grief support provided by Good Shepherd Hospice to residents in Polk, Highlands and Hardee counties and other services, please call our helpful Good Shepherd Hospice team at either 863.968.1707 or toll-free at 1.800.464. 3994 or send an email to info@chaptershealth.org

Everyday, We Can Make an Impact

 Unresolved grief and loss, especially when traumatic, has been proven to lead to issues such as social/behavioral performance in school and other settings, anxiety, depression and other emotional and psychological problems that extend into adulthood.

The Bethany Center offers these forms of counseling: 

  • Individual Counseling: Focusing specifically on the needs of young people ages 3 through 16. 
  • Group Conseling: A program that stresses the importance of intra-family support, while providing education on the grieving process. 
  • Holiday Grief Program: The holidays can be an exponentially difficult time for anyone who has lost a loved one. This program helps individuals through this time of the year and keeps grief from stealing the holidays.