Peer support programs

Experiencing the loss of a pregnancy or the death of a baby is devastating. But you aren’t alone. Pregnancy and Infant Loss (PAIL) Network is here to help, with free peer-led, group and individual support services offered to families across Ontario.

Our support programs are led by trained volunteers who have experienced pregnancy or infant loss first-hand. We are a barrier-free, inclusive organization. We can provide interpreters in several languages, at a family’s request.

We know that there is no time limit on grief. For this reason, families can access our services at any time for as long as they need.

To access support from PAIL Network, please fill out our request for support form.

Circles of support groups

PAIL Network offers group support in communities all across Ontario. We recognize how important it is for families to feel a connection to others who have experienced a similar loss, and to talk about their loss in a safe space.

These groups are facilitated by a PAIL Network group facilitator who has a lived experience of loss and has successfully completed the training required to host a circle of support. Information about the date, time and location of each group is provided to families after they have completed their PAIL Network request for support form. Families can attend a circle of support for as as long as they would like. These groups are typically attended by bereaved parents, and are open to any other adult family members who have been impacted by the loss.

Circles of Support typically meet once a month for 1.5-2 hours. We currently are offering in-person support in the following communities across Ontario:

  • Alliston – 3rd Tuesday of the month at 6:30 pm
  • Barrie – 1st Tuesday of the month at 7:30 pm
  • Belleville – 2nd Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Brantford – last Monday of the month at 7:30 pm
  • Cobourg – 2nd Tuesday of the month at 7:30 pm
  • Georgina – 2nd Thursday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Hamilton – 2nd Monday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Kawartha Lakes (Linsday) – 3rd Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Kenora – 2nd Tuesday of the month at 6:30 pm
  • Kincardine – last Sunday of the month at 3:00 pm
  • London – 3rd Tuesday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Markham – 2nd Tuesday of the month at 7:30 pm
  • Mississauga – 3rd Wednesday of the month at 7:30 pm
  • Newmarket – last Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Ottawa (Kanata) – 3rd Thursday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Owen Sound – 3rd Monday of the month at 7:30 pm
  • Perth – 4th Tuesday of the month at 6:30 pm
  • Peterborough – 2nd Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Catharines – 3rd Tuesday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Thunder Bay – 1st Thursday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Toronto (Bloor West) – 1st Tuesday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Toronto (Leaside) – 2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month at 7:30 pm
  • Toronto (Scarborough) – 1st Tuesday of the month at 6:30 pm
  • Vaughan – 1st Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm
  • Whitby – 3rd Tuesday of the month at 7:30 pm
  • Windsor – 3rd Thursday of the month at 7:00 pm

One-to-one peer phone support

Many families, particularly during the days and weeks immediately following their loss, will choose to begin receiving support with a one-to-one phone support session. This individual support connects families with a volunteer who is as closely matched to the family’s circumstances as possible, and often can be someone who lives in the same community.

Phone support volunteers have a lived experience of loss, and have completed the training required to meet the unique needs of families who are grieving the loss of their pregnancy or of their baby.

Families typically complete four, 45-minute phone sessions with a phone support volunteer. Following these four sessions, families can contact PAIL Network if they wish to continue receiving support.

Subsequent pregnancy support

We welcome all families in Ontario who are currently pregnant after a loss to join our subsequent pregnancy support group.  We understand this can be a difficult and stressful time for families, and invite you to share with others.  This online scheduled group is hosted the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of the month, and a link will be provided after registration.  Please complete a request for support form for specific details.

Online support 

PAIL Network offers peer-led online support to all families across Ontario who have experienced a pregnancy loss or an infant death.  Our team of trained volunteers are now providing support during scheduled online meetings that you can access from the comfort of home. These online groups connect families who share a similar experience of loss, and these discussions are moderated by a peer support volunteer who also shares that experience. Please complete a request for support form for group dates and specific details.