Bereavement help

You have so much to deal with when someone close to you passes away. There’s the devastating emotional impact which can go on long after the funeral has taken place and also there may be practical and financial repercussions that you have to sort out.

A bereavement may leave you with mounting debts or an inability to pay the rent or mortgage, or may cause you to suffer a mental illness such as depression. But whatever the outcome there is someone out there who is ready to listen and to help you.

Not everyone’s needs are the same and there are groups set up specifically for the type of bereavement that you are experiencing.

Such groups are frequently the main source of available support for those who are undergoing the pain of grief and loss but the main thing is that you get the help you need.

Finding support following a death is key to ensuring that your life can be rebuilt and many of those who have participated in support and bereavement groups say the experience gave them an emotional connection when they felt isolated from friends and family.

Here we explore the types of support available to you.

At a Loss

This is a website that will help you find the bereavement services and counselling you need. They also have resources on coronavirus pandemic bereavement.

Bereaved through Alcohol and Drugs (BEAD)

For those who have lost someone through substance abuse.

Child Bereavement UK

This is for people whose baby or child is dying but also for a child who is facing bereavement themselves,

0800 028 8840

The Compassionate Friends

Provides support to bereaved families after the death of a child.

0345 123 2304

Cruse Bereavement Care

Here you will find plenty of information and support if you have suffered a bereavement.

0808 808 1677

Dying Matters

This is a coalition of individual and organisational members across England and Wales, which aims to help people talk more openly about dying, death and bereavement, and to make plans for the end of life.

The Good Grief Trust

A charity run by the bereaved, helping all those suffering grief in the UK. They can help you find reassurance, advice and support. You can also find plenty of advice here if you have been bereaved as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.


If your mental health is suffering as the result of a loved one’s passing then the charity Mind is a good place to start. You can contact their helpline, receive face-to-face counselling and receive support from their online community.


The Samaritans are open 24/7 for anyone who needs to talk.

116 123 (freephone)


Sands provides information and support for those who have suffered the loss of a baby

0808 164 3332


This is a support group for anyone who has been bereaved by an unexpected death.

0800 2600 400

Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SOBS)

Emotional and practical support and local groups for anyone bereaved or affected by suicide.

0300 111 5065

Widowed and Young (WAY)

Offers a peer-to-peer support network to anyone who was aged 50 or under when their partner died.

Financial help

You don’t have to suffer if you are struggling or in debt as the result of a bereavement. There is a raft of help out there with organisations on hand to help you. Here is some of the practical help that you can access.

Bereavement support payment

You may be able to get Bereavement Support Payment (BSP) if your husband, wife or civil partner died in the last 21 months.

Funeral Expenses Payment

If you’re on a low income and need help to pay for a funeral you are arranging, you may be able to get a Funeral Expenses Payment from the Social Fund. Depending upon your circumstances, you might have to repay some or all of it from the deceased person’s estate.

Industrial Injuries Benefit

If your husband, wife or civil partner was disabled as a result of an industrial accident or disease that occurred before their death and was not getting Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit, you may be able to claim it for a period before their death.

War Pensions and Armed Forces Compensation Scheme

A War Widow’s or Widower’s Pension is a tax-free pension you may be entitled to if your wife, husband or civil partner died as a result of their service in Her Majesty’s (HM) Armed Forces or during a time of war.

For those who served after 6 April 2005, the

offers financial help.

Guardian’s Allowance

Guardian’s Allowance is a tax-free payment for people who are bringing up children whose parents have died.

Other benefits available

Other benefits and help are available depending on your circumstances.



How to support someone who is bereaved


  • Be there for the person who is grieving – pick up the phone, write a letter or an email, call by or arrange to visit.
  • Accept that everyone grieves in their own way, there is no ‘normal’ way.
  • Encourage the person to talk.
  • Listen to the person.
  • Create an environment in which the bereaved person can be themselves and show their feelings, rather than having to put on a front.
  • Be aware that grief can take a long time.
  • Contact the person at difficult times such as special anniversaries and birthdays.
  • Mention useful support agencies such as Cruse Bereavement Care.
  • Offer useful practical help.


  • Avoid someone who has been bereaved.
  • Use clichés such as ‘I understand how you feel’; ‘You’ll get over it ; ‘Time heals’.
  • Tell them it’s time to move on, they should be over it – how long a person needs to grieve is entirely individual.
  • Be alarmed if the bereaved person doesn’t want to talk or demonstrates anger.
  • Underestimate how emotionally draining it can be when supporting a grieving person. Make sure you take care of yourself too.


Don’t forget that your funeral director will always be there to help you take those initial steps following someone’s passing and will be able to offer valuable practical advice as well as emotional support during this difficult time. We will always be there for you so please get in touch at

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