Connecting with people during National Grief Awareness Week

November 2021

Family Support

Prospect Hospice is encouraging people to talk about their grief and connect with others during National Grief Awareness Week (2-8 December).

So many people have felt isolated and alone in their grief during the pandemic and the focus of the week is to reconnect communities.

Throughout the week Prospect Hospice will be posting on its social media channels with tips to talk about grief and reconnecting with people.

Louise Tilney, the hospice’s bereavement care co-ordinator, said: “Sometimes people don’t know what to say to their friend, family member or a colleague who is bereaved and they are worried that by saying something it will upset them.

“If you don’t know what to say it’s ok to acknowledge that. In my experience people want to tell their story and don’t want their loved one to be forgotten. They’d much rather have a conversation than feel ignored.”

Prospect Hospice’s bereavement support team and bereavement volunteers have worked throughout the pandemic supporting families and loved ones of patients who have died during this time.

This involved switching to holding bereavement support sessions online or by making telephone calls until some in person face to face meetings were able to resume. As well as one to one sessions, the hospice ran a virtual bereavement group.

The hospice is only able to offer this support because of the generous donations it receives from the local community.

Louise said: “Throughout the pandemic we have been there for people who needed our support. We have supported hundreds of people and this included multiple members of families who wanted our help following the death of a loved one.

“People we supported have told us they found it valuable and for some it was a lifeline, due to the social isolation.  I’m proud that we have been able to support people and privileged that they have allowed us to connect with them at such a difficult time in their life.”

Louise said while many people who are bereaved can go to their family and friends for support, there are those who don’t have this line of support or feel they would benefit from talking to the bereavement team at the hospice.

If you are bereaved and need support at this time Prospect Hospice has some practical and useful information on its website here

Following the end of National Grief Awareness Week Prospect Hospice will broadcast its annual Light up a Life service for people to remember loved ones.

The service is being held virtually and will be live streamed on You Tube on Sunday 12 December at 4.30pm, enabling people to watch it in the comfort of their own homes.

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