"Every death affects people differently. We’re often too polite to ask for help, or don’t offer it for fear of saying the wrong thing. But a family or a community dealing with loss needs help."
This year, Dying Matters is asking everybody a simple question - "What Can You Do?" Talking and planning ahead for dying, death and bereavement is really important. But people also need practical help and support and there are plenty of things we can do to help each other.
So please think about what you can do to offer help and support to people who may be coping with dying, death and bereavement, whether it is friends, neighbours, a work colleague or someone in your wider community.
- make a will
- plan your funeral
- decide future care wishes
- consider organ donation
For your family
- encourage conversation
- discuss once you/they have made plans
- offer support
- share digital legacy details - for example, what are the passwords to your music and photo collections? These things will mean a lot to your friends and family
For your friends
- offer to help with shopping or household chores
- offer a lift if needed/able
- suggest meeting for a drink
- remember it’s ok to be honest and say “I don’t know what to say but I am here for you” when someone is bereaved
- Ask them what they would find helpful
For your community
- volunteer at a local hospice or charity
- offer to help with daily tasks, such as shopping, cooking or walking the dog
- start or get involved with support groups
We say more about this in our What Can You Do leaflet, which you can download here.
Each day of Awareness Week, we will be releasing factsheets covering topics such as financial benefits, pain management, non-traditional funerals, homelessness and talking to young people about dying, death and bereavement. We will be publishing those on this page, so do come back and read them. There will also be daily Twitter chats from 1pm - 2pm on these subjects, so please do join us.
- Monday - Pain Management
- Tuesday - Talking to bereaved children
- Wednesday - Digital Legacy
- Thursday - Finance and benefits
- Friday - How to have a good funeral
Follow the week on Twitter using the hashtag #WhatCanYouDoYou can also buy some resources here "You can do something to help someone cope with dying, death and bereavement."