Cy-Fair women who have lost their husbands have a new outlet to meet women dealing with similar experiences. Modern Widows Club, a national nonprofit, launched its third regional chapter, which covers Northwest Houston and Katy, in February.

Regional Leader Natalie Lancaster said the organization aspires to be a bridge of understanding, comfort, compassion and positive change between a widow and her community. Women can find mentoring, leadership and empowerment through member services, social media, a resource library, social connection and a blog, Lancaster said.

“We are not grief support, but rather ‘life support,’” she said. “It is just a safe haven for widows to get together and meet new friends on the same journey.”

Each of the three Houston chapters hosts monthly social outings including brunch, dinner and trips to the theater. Members range from 30 to 90 years old. 

Lancaster met her husband Kevin through mutual friends in high school. The couple married in 1979 and had three children. At age 53, he passed away after a cancer diagnosis.

After speaking with her pastor and reading several books, Lancaster said she still needed something extra to help her move forward. She met Carolyn Moor, founding director of Modern Widows Club, who encouraged her.

Lancaster said this inspired her to mentor other widows in the area. However, nothing like Modern Widows Club existed in Houston at the time. Lancaster helped launch a central Houston chapter in 2014, and today she serves all three chapters.

“Many become single moms overnight,” she said. “Take some time to help a widow change a hard-to-reach light bulb, rake a bag of leaves, help replace air filters, do their oil change. There are so many things that widows have to be responsible for suddenly, and it’s hard to learn to manage it all by yourself.”

Lancaster said she hopes to one day serve as a program director on a national level in the organization, continuing to open more chapters.

“There is a special strength that comes from this common bond,” Lancaster said. “We move forward together, pushing each other toward promise of a better life.”