A study to support families and friends bereaved during COVID-19 and beyond has been undertaken by University of Southampton Health Sciences’ researchers Dr Natasha Campling, Dr Michelle Myall and Dr Susi Lund. Funded by the National Institute for Health Research Applied Research Collaboration Wessex (NIHR ARC Wessex), the 12-month project has designed a web-resource in conjunction with people who have been bereaved and bereavement professionals.
The www.familiesinbereavement.org.uk online resource was developed following a review of the evidence and a survey to identify key elements of family bereavement support. Survey findings were presented at an online workshop attended by people with personal and professional experience of bereavement to develop agreement on the content of the resource.
The resource encourages individuals to consider grief and bereavement in the context of the family and close social networks and has been designed to help families (in which we include relatives of the person who has died as well as friends, neighbours and others who are important to them) to try to make sense of their loss, promote communication, and reflect on ways to manage grief collectively. Each section offers information and suggestions for dealing with grief, activities to manage grief as a family, as well as links to other useful resources.
The web-resource is being launched to coincide with National Grief Awareness Week (2-8 December). You can find it at: www.familiesinbereavement.org.uk If you have been bereaved (for any reason) from the beginning of 2020 we would welcome your thoughts on the resource via the short survey which can be found on the Feedback page .