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Who Are We and Why Are We Here?

Meet Our Founder . . .

"The innovator of a non-therapeutic approach to helping individuals navigate the wilderness of grief and journey to a fulfilled life of meaning and purpose."

After working many years in the death care industry, assisting hundreds of families with making arrangements, and listening to countless stories and expressions of grief, Dora Carpenter said, "We must do more to help support individuals after the services are over, family and friends have departed, doorbell and phone rings have ceased, and the reality of the death sets in."  This ignited her passion for grief coaching and she later founded the From Grief to Gratitude Coach Certification Program to train and certify grief coaches. ~~ read more

Dora Carpenter, CPC

Founder | CEO | Program Director

Christina Ferguson, MS, CPC

Executive Director

Carlton Carpenter

Director of Compassion

Valerie Alawiye, MBA, ACC

Advisory Board

Elizabeth Brumfield, ACC

Advisory Board

Cveta Carter

Advisory Board

Ronald Hardy, Sr.

Advisory Board

The death of your loved one has changed your world forever. It has placed itself on your calendar and you can’t change, postpone, or delete it. You have been given membership in a club that you never asked to join. While the painful emotions of loss seem unbearable, others try to console you. Although meaning well, they often say all the wrong things, such as “I understand how you feel.” No one can possibly understand how you feel as no one had the exact unique relationship that you had with your loved one. You question if you will ever get on top of your grief. You might even fear what your life will look like going forward. No, life will never be the same again, but it can be meaningful. We are here to journey with you through the wilderness of grief. We are here to coach you from pain to peace, heartbreak to happiness, and grief to gratitude.

We are taught CPR, first aid, the 911 call system, emergency evacuation procedures, fire and safety precautions… all great and necessary information for events that may or may not happen. Unfortunately, we are NOT taught how to handle the inevitable… death and grief. Millions are affected by loss and grief each year and Dora Carpenter, Certified Professional Coach and Founder, From Grief to Gratitude, says that we must do more to educate on this sensitive and neglected topic. She says, “Simply knowing the common myths and how to avoid the pitfalls of grief can significantly reduce the anxiety, stress, and overwhelm individuals experience when suffering from the loss of loved ones.” Working in the death care industry and assisting hundreds of families with making final arrangements for loved ones birthed her passion for helping individuals navigate the wilderness of grief.

While one is in task mode 24-48 hours immediately following a death, the reality of the death actually sets in after the services are over, family and friends have returned to their daily lives, the doorbell and telephone rings have ceased, and the house is quiet. The depth of loss and the broken heart is experienced in that moment that one reaches out to talk, touch, or telephone a loved one and they are no longer there. These emotions, although natural and normal responses to loss, can be painful and seemingly unbearable; and, while others try to help, they sometimes say all the wrong things, such as "I understand how you feel" or “You are strong. You can handle this.”

What about any unresolved grief, maybe even from childhood, such as the death of a parent, grandparent, or even a sibling … that elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about? Did you know that even a small amount of unresolved grief can affect every area of your life?

Referred to by a client as “the angel of comfort,” Dora Carpenter provides a calming, empathetic approach in her powerfully effective grief coaching process and is honored to be able to build a team of certified coaches to expand her mission to help individuals go from grief to gratitude in the shortest time possible.

What Makes the From Grief to Gratitude Coaching Program Unique?

Dora Carpenter did not create the From Grief to Gratitude Coaching Program because she studied psychology, thanatology, or mortuary science. Nor did she start a coaching business and randomly choose grief as a specialized niche. While working with hundreds of families in the death care industry, Dora realized a great need for providing grief support to families following funeral and memorial services. Being told “no” to the suggestion to offer an aftercare grief support service at her place of employment, she vowed to make it her “yes” and do something. She trained as a grief coach and began offering free grief support at local libraries in the community. The From Grief to Gratitude Coaching Program is designed by one who has been in the trenches with and for you. She does not merely talk the talk, but has walked the walk with her clients as well as through her own personal grief experiences.  Listening to countless stories of hopes and dreams never realized, Dora Carpenter feels that she has buried as many unfulfilled wishes in the cemetery as bodies and cremated remains. To address this, the From Grief to Gratitude Coaching Program includes a life coaching element from her Decide to Say Yes! signature coaching program that takes clients beyond the grief journey in order to find meaning and purpose in life going forward. 

The From Grief to Gratitude Coach Certification Program, now also including modules addressing grief in the workplace, is accredited by the International Coaching Federation (ICF).  IOPGC trains and certifies coaches to teach, train, and coach using the From Grief to Gratitude Coaching Program Model.