An independent news publication of
United Way of Lancaster County


Programs to support families struggling with loss


The American Red Cross is now offering a Virtual Family Assistance Center (VFAC) to support families struggling with loss and grief due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Those interested or in need of services can visit to access a support hub with special virtual programs, information, referrals and other services to support families in need. The hub will also connect people to community resources provided by partners in their area, including here in Central PA.  All support is provided virtually and is completely confidential and free.

The Red Cross recognizes that many families have experienced a disrupted bereavement and grief process due to restrictions related to COVID-19 and to help, the Red Cross has set up a virtual team of specially trained volunteers who are:


  • Connecting with families over the phone to offer condolences, support and access to resources that may be available.
  • Providing support for virtual memorial services, including connecting families with local faith-based community partners.
  • Sharing information and referrals to state and local agencies as well as other community organizations.
  • Hosting online classes to help foster resilience and facilitate coping skills.


The Red Cross also understands that some individuals in need of these services may not have reliable access to the internet. To meet this need, the Red Cross has established a toll-free number (1-833-492-0094) available daily from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. EST. There they will reach a trained Red Cross volunteer available in English or Spanish.

Additional information can be found at