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Support for when someone dies
There are few moments more difficult to cope with than the loss of someone we love. With their passing can come a confusing array of emotions, and it’s perfectly natural to struggle in coming to terms with their loss.
Along with this, there are also a set of practical tasks that will need to be undertaken – from registering their death with the Government to working out to arrange a funeral in line with their wishes.
On this page, you’ll hopefully find some helpful resources, support groups and recommended services that can guide you through this difficult time.
Taking the practical first steps
When a loved one dies, it might be very difficult to consider practical tasks. Below are some resources to guide you through the process.
- UK Government: When someone dies, a step by step guide on practical tasks – This is the best place to start when you’re trying to tick off some of the more practical tasks, such as registering a death and arranging a funeral.
- UK Government: Find local bereavement services – Your local authority can be a great help to get everything organised. Enter your postcode on this page and you’ll be put through to your local site on bereavement.
- Citizens Advice: Arranging a funeral – This easy-to-understand guide from Citizens Advice runs through all of the key decisions and considerations you should go through when arranging a funeral for a loved one.
Free bereavement advice
Our partners at Co-op Legal Services have introduced a free Bereavement Notification Service. A Co-op Advisor will be able to give you free advice and guidance over the telephone and provide you with template letters for banks, insurers and other financial institutions.
They’ll also be able to help with the Government’s Tell Us Once service and even give advice on how to suppress junk mail and how to close down or memorialise social media accounts.
The advisor will explain whether probate is needed and can arrange a free appointment with one of our consultants to explain our estate administration service and give you a no-obligation price for Co-op Legal Services to carry out the required work for you. As an Elder customer, you’re entitled to a 5% discount on their probate services.
Coming to terms with loss
It’s never easy coping with the passing of someone you love. And, although it can often feel like it, you’re never alone. As well as the support of friends, family and neighbours, there’s a range of specialist charities that you can rely on.
- Cruse Bereavement Care – This is the leading national charity for bereaved people in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. They offer a local in-person bereavement help through their network of volunteers, a dedicated support line, as well as a really comprehensive range of online resources.
- Mind bereavement support – The UK’s leading mental health charity offers an array of useful information on bereavement, stories of those who’ve come to terms with loss, and suggestions for helping yourself and others through grief.
- The Loss Foundation – This is the only UK charity dedicated solely to providing bereavement support following the loss of a loved one to cancer, whether that be spouses, family members, friends or colleagues and Covid-19.
- The Good Grief Trust – A charity that exists to help all those affected by grief in the UK. They aim to find the bereaved, acknowledge their grief and provide reassurance, a virtual hand of friendship and ongoing support
- Dying Matters – An organisation working to create an open culture that talks about death, dying and bereavement. They have launched a #beforetheirtime campaign for COVID-19.
- Widowed and Young (WAY) – A UK charity that offers a peer-to-peer support network for anyone who’s lost a partner before their 51st birthday.
Using NHS services
The National Health Service offer a range of guides and resources that can help you with self-care throughout the process of grieving. As well as visiting your GP, they offer a range of online services.
- Find psychological therapies – Grief can very often impact mental health. The NHS offers various therapies to help you better cope with stress, anxiety and depression that commonly stem from the grieving process. This online portal allows you to get started with a self-referral.
- Coping with bereavement – The NHS has put together this hub for those who are coming to terms with loss. It talks through some of the common symptoms you’re likely to experience and signposts you in the direction of resources and support services in the health service and beyond.
Building new friendships
Sometimes, the support that works best for people is talking to people in a similar situation.
- Age UK Befriending Services – The leading national charity for elderly people offer befriending services for those who’ve recently experienced a bereavement. These can be invaluable if you or a loved one are struggling to live alone as a result of someone’s passing.
- Independent Age Regular Visits – If you want someone to check in and make sure your loved one is alright, you can arrange regular visits from an Independent Age volunteer. It can be a really useful service if someone close to you has recently been left without their spouse.
- Re-engage – This is a charity that exists to support older people who live alone and have set up a UK-wide call companions’ service, available even when home visits aren’t possible. It means there’s always someone over the other end of the line to talk to.