The Stepping Forward in Grief Study is now open. Submitted photo
The Stepping Forward in Grief Study is now open. Submitted photo

Submitted by Ami Neiberger-Miller, Stepping Forward in Grief Study, Surviving sister of US Army Specialist Christopher Neiberger, KIA 08/06/07 Baghdad, Iraq

PURCELLVILLE, VA – The Stepping Forward in Grief Study tests two evidence based online/app programs created by scientists and clinicians at Uniformed Services University and Columbia University to address grief-related challenges. These programs were developed in response to earlier research suggesting that grief-related challenges can occur among bereaved military survivors, even many years following a loss, and that many surviving loved ones desire additional support.

The study is NOW open to close friends and family members of those who died before or after September 11, 2001 while serving in the military or as a result of their military service. For instance, this would include:

  • Any immediate family member - such as a parent, spouse, sibling or adult child
  • Any non-immediate family member - such as a cousin, grandparent, uncle, or aunt
  • Any close friend or battle buddy of an active duty service member who died while serving

Participants will be randomly assigned to one of these two programs, GriefSteps or WellnessSteps, in order to test their ability to support grief adaptation in bereaved military survivors. The study team is particularly hoping to reach and enroll bereaved family members who continue to struggle with their grief. It is our hope that the results of the study will lead to better resources for the bereaved in years to come.

Interested potential participants can sign up by going to steppingforwardstudy.org/ and clicking “Enroll Now,” where they will be asked to answer some screening questions, fill out an online consent form, and complete a 20-minute survey. Following enrollment, participants will be contacted by study personnel to complete a telephonic screening and enrollment. Once enrolled, study participants will have access to the assigned program for 6 months and will be asked to provide feedback about their experience. For more information, please contact info@steppingforwardstudy.org or check out the website steppingforwardstudy.org.