About Us

Mission Statement

Widowed Persons Service is organized exclusively for the purpose of offering supportive services to those individuals in the greater Grand Rapids area who have suffered the loss of a spouse through death.

Vision Statement

Our vision is to provide actively grieving widowed men and women a safe and healthy environment in which to process their grief, resulting in an enriching life as a single person.

Our Process

Widowed Persons Service offers each grieving individual peer-to-peer support based on the belief that a widowed person is best helped along his/her grief journey with the help of other widowed people who have had similar experiences.

Please read our attached Organizational Statements and Program Policies, formally adopted October 2011, for further information regarding our approach to services.

Organizational Statements and Program Policies

History

WPS was established in 1973, specifically in the Grand Rapids area in 1978. Over the past 36 years, many chapters have closed or become informational organizations. Thus, our local effort is unique. This program is special because of its focus on widowed people helping each other get through one of the most difficult transitions in life.

How We Can Help

  • Support Group Meetings – 5 Monthly support group meetings are offered in the metropolitan area of Grand Rapids. An additional 6-week intensive study is held multiple times throughout the year. These groups allow widowed persons to meet and find support from others. The setting offers a place in which feelings, concerns, and problems of the bereaved may be expressed to others who have “been there” and can offer support out of their own experiences. Check the Events page for a link to this month’s Support Group Meetings.
  • Social Activities – Monthly social activities are coordinated by WPS volunteers. Events include card game nights, various dinners, Grand Rapids area attractions, and much more. Check the Events page for a link to this month’s Social Activities.
  • Monthly Newsletter – Widowed Persons Service publishes a monthly newsletter filled with information about upcoming events, acknowledgements, and announcements.
  • WPS Library – A small library of pertinent books and handouts for widowed persons is available at our office.

We do our best to locate and reach out to those who have experienced the death of a spouse, but our methods are not perfect. If you are in need of our services or if you know someone who could benefit from our organization, please do not hesitate to call our office and request information. We welcome new participants year-round.

Governance and Oversight

Widowed Persons Service is a registered 501 c 3 nonprofit organization. Goveranance and oversight are provided by a Board of Directors. The board meets monthly and includes widowed representation. Several board members are local business people who share working relationships with widowed men and women in the areas of finance, insurance, funeral planning and legal matters/estate planning. Current board membership includes:

Agnes Kempker-Cloyd, Chair

Jacqueline Antone

Mike Larabel, Secretary

Stacy Levitt, Treasurer

Carol Drake

Larry Faragalli

Jan Holmes

Mark Kubik

Paul Mardirosian

Elaine Myers

Stephen Watt

Chris Wilks