There will be hundreds of events happening across the country for Dying Matters week, which takes place from 8 – 14 May.
The theme this year is What Can You Do? The organisers want to challenge everyone to get their own plans in place, including planning their funeral – but also to think about their wider community.
A little over half a million people die each year in England, and every one of those deaths has an impact on multiple people.
What’s mostly needed is practical support, which will be as varied as what people can offer and what people need.
It might be walking a neighbour’s dog, or giving someone a lift, or cooking a meal.
It could be just sitting or listening. It might be healing someone explore their options for their funeral.
What the help is will depend on how well you know them, and what they need. But the start is to say “Is there anything I can do to help?” And then to say it again a week later, as a lot of people need to be asked more than once.
Surveys have shown that most people would rather be at home when they die, yet about half of deaths are in hospital.
Many people are still comfortable talking about death – or don’t know someone comfortable discussing it with them – and so don’t have plans in place when they die. If people are going to be able to die where they want to, and if people are going to be able to discuss their wishes and get their plans in place, then we all have to help out. Dying Matters because each individual matters. What Can You Do?
To find out more about events visit www.dyingmatters.org/page/map-awareness-week-events-2017