Event Details

PrairieCare Education Series May 2021

Title: Trauma Transformed Through Art and Narrative

Presenter: Rebecca Anderson, Aidan Anderson and Carol Allesee


Rebecca Anderson is the co-founder and owner of Suicide Survivors’ Club (SSC), a public speaker, suicide loss survivor and the author of Parenting the Suicide Survivors’ Club, one of 5 books in the set titled Suicide Survivors’ Club – A Family’s Journey Through the Death of Their Loved One. The book set was awarded a first-place Midwest Book Award by the Midwest Independent Publishers Association (2017).

Rebecca is also a mother and a medical professional with a BS in Public Health/Sociology, LPN, and LCSW. She lost her husband, Don, an artist, to suicide in 2002. In memory of Don, and as part of her healing process, she produced an art book entitled Intimate Immensities (2008) highlighting his sculptural works.

Aidan Anderson is a suicide loss survivor and public speaker. He has a certificate from NAMI Minnesota’s Connect Survivor Voices Curriculum. The book Aidan in the Suicide Survivors Club book set represents his story as a teen looking back on his life after his dad died by suicide in 2002.  He enjoys speaking at presentations and believes his voice as a suicide loss survivor can offer hope to others.

Carol Allesee – Art Facilitator has over 25 years of experience in designing and implementing expressive arts programming for children and their families who are faced with illness and grief. As the Arts Coordinator at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics in Minneapolis-St. Paul since 2011, she coordinates the Arts and Healing Initiative program for patients and families. Carol has worked in both the public and private school systems, as well as many nonprofit agencies that serve children and families in the twin cities area. She has a B.A. in Communications from Indiana University.

Description: An integrated approach to healing using art and storytelling tools created by Suicide Surivors’ Club based on their 5 book series Suicide Survivors’ Club: A Family’s Journey Through the Death of Their Loved One. Participants will learn about the books and how to utilize the Healing After a Suicide Loss – All Ages Workbook + Activity Guide, which includes how to facilitate a Story Portrait™ workshop for loss survivors. Lastly, participants will learn about complicated grief, the warning signs of suicide, and how to use safe messaging with suicide loss survivors.

Note: As a special offer, if you are interested in ordering the hardcopy version of Healing After a Suicide Loss: All Ages Workbook + Activity Guide ($20), please go to suicidesurvivorsclub.com  Every order will include the Suicide Survivors’ Club: A Family’s Journey Through the Death of Their Loved One 5-book set at no charge + shipping.


  • How the books serve as the foundational piece for the art/narrative workshop
  • Demonstrate how visual art/narrative helped a family regain its balance after the trauma of losing their loved one to suicide.
  • Validate the ups and downs of how life changes after a suicide death of a family member by offering an example of how one family experienced it and moved forward with their lives.
  • Provide a way for suicide loss survivors to connect with their own story using artistic and narrative processes designed to help facilitate neural integration, a critical process in the resolution of complicated grief.

You guys are amazing to work with and were a light in a time of sadness, devastation, and darkness for both my daughter and I. Everyone has both been so kind and understanding to my daughter and I during this process and I can’t thank PrairieCare enough. I feel like I’m getting my little girl back and feel as though we both have the resources and coping skills to get through this. I can tell the staff at PrarieCare really cares about their patients and their families! Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart!

Anonymous , Parent

I am very grateful that I was respected. Being called my preferred name and pronouns made my time in Prariecare much more bearable

Anonymous, Patient