I recently sat down with Megan Kopka, Community Advocate of the Cape Fear Community of Modern Widows Club to learn more about how this club has been providing needed support for widows in our community for almost two years.
What is Modern Widows Club?
While Modern Widows Club is a support group for widows, Megan feels it is important to clarify that it is not a grief support group, but a life support group. “It is an organization that help women lean back into their life and rebuild with resilience,” she explained. While a grief group is often most appropriate in the early months following the loss of a spouse and recommended as a first step, the Modern Widows Club provides the next level of support, friendships and mentor relationships necessary for the months and years beyond.
Megan described seven “Healthy Pillars for Living” that the club is built on. These are: physical health, mental health, emotional health, relational health, financial health, finding purpose and meaning, and fun and adventure.
These pillars form the topics of discussion for each of the meetings. The Cape Fear community meets in person the first Tuesday of every month from 7 to 9 pm. At these meetings, participants will find a combination of socializing, introductions, and discussion around a short video clip that is sent out to be watched prior to the meeting. More importantly, they find support and friendships. In addition to the monthly meetings, the club also hosts two social events each month.
What are the benefits of participating in Modern Widows Club?
Megan shared that these gatherings provide the two things resilience science says you need that you can’t provide for yourself: a mentor and a support group. Modern Widows Club benefits widows through mentor relationships with women who have been where they are and through the support of a tribe of women with the shared experience of losing a spouse. She shared how one participant said the club provided the first relationships where she felt she could really be vulnerable since the death of her husband.
When asked who the group was for, Megan shared that their group is made up of widows from their 30s to their 80s, from newer widows to those who have been widowed for years. Ideally widows will have attended a grief group first, though these groups were limited or non-existent in the early months of the pandemic.
How do I get involved?
If you are a widow interested in attending a monthly meeting, you are invited to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 910-409-4430 to learn more. If you are interested in supporting this Modern Widows Club, you are encouraged to let widows know about this resource and to make a donation as they are a non-profit organization.
You can also find videos, podcasts, virtual support, and interest-specific clubs on the website at modernwidowsclub.org. On June 23rd we will have a post about what widows wish their family and friends knew. June 23rd is International Widows’ Day as well as the two-year anniversary of our local community of Modern Widows Club.
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