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Jessicas House hosting tour
jessicas house
Jessicas House, operated by EMC Health, is a grief support center geared to children and their families. - photo by Photo Contributed

Jessica’s House, the center that helps children and families through the grieving process, will host a “Tour of the Heart,” an informal information session about the services offered at the Turlock facility.

The open house is slated to start at 6 p.m. Thursday at Jessica’s House located at 741 E. Main St.

Jessica’s House is a place for grieving children, teens, young adults, and families to share their experiences through art, talking, and play. The tour will include some sharing of inspirational stories from individuals who have benefited from Jessica’s House.

“Jessica’s House is based on the model of peer support,” explained Erin Nelson, the executive director of Jessica’s House. “It creates a safe place where children learn they are not alone.

“Research shows that children who don’t have a place to express themselves in loss don’t do as well in life, and we know programs such as these make a difference,” Nelson said. “We want to support grieving families to help create a healthier and more compassionate community.”

Jessica’s House is named in memory of Jessica Everett, who was born April 5, 1995 in Turlock, to Michael and Danielle Everett. Diagnosed with leukemia at the age of six, she faced her disease with determination and grace, often reaching out during her hospital stays to help other children who were ill. Jessica died in 2004, at the age of nine, yet her compassion for hurting families now lives on through the gift of Jessica’s House.

“Tour of the Heart” is free and open to the public.