Good Grief Journal

NGAW: Covid Deaths

03.12.2020


We are supporting The Good Grief Trust’s National Grief Awareness Week (Dec 2-8) by releasing recorded events from Good Grief Festival for a limited time. Today, the focus is on people who have been bereaved by Covid-19. The videos below will be available to watch until December 15th.

The Covid Cataclysm: How Do We Grieve for ‘Normal’?

How do we grieve for the loss of normal life and all of our hopes, plans and expectations of the future? Join our experts in this free online session to discuss what many people are trying to get to grips with during the pandemic: collective grief.

Along with Julia Samuel MBE, we welcome Alex Evans and Ivor Williams of The Collective Psychology Project, the group behind This Too Shall Pass: Mourning collective loss in a time of Covid-19

Alex is a Senior Fellow at New York University, and the author of The Myth Gap: What Happens When Evidence and Arguments Aren’t Enough? Ivor is a designer who’s developing new ways of thinking about dying, death and loss. He leads the End-of-Life Care group at the Institute of Global Health Innovation within Imperial College London.

Psychotherapist Julia Samuel is a grief expert who was awarded an MBE in 2015 for her services to bereaved children. Her books include Grief Works and This Too Shall Pass. Julia says that many intense and dramatic changes in life may not actually be death, but they come with all the hallmarks of grief, such as the unprecedented change and anxiety experienced during the pandemic.

This session is led by Dr John Troyer, Director of the Centre for Death and Society at the University of Bath. John is co-founder of the Death Reference Desk website and the Future Cemetery Project and author of the 2020 book, Technologies of the Human Corpse.

Grief School: Grieving During Covid-19

In this Grief School panel discussion, we talk to experts about grief and bereavement during the Covid-19 pandemic. We discuss the nature of this unique context and how Lockdown and other restrictions have impacted our ability to grieve.

The discussion is led by Dr Lucy Selman, founder of the Good Grief Festival and co-lead of the University of Bristol’s Palliative and End of Life Care Research Group. Dr Selman is joined by Andy Langford, Chief Operating Officer of Cruse Bereavement Care.

Panellist Paul Kefford is a life-centred Funeral Celebrant and end-of-life doula who has facilitated Death Cafés. Following his diagnosis of a manageable life-limiting illness, Paul became a celebrant and independent death scholar. He was previously a Samaritan listener and is a trained bereavement counsellor.

We welcome Fatima Khan-Shah, a public and patient engagement and involvement professional who specialises in health, social care and education. Fatima is also a Patient and Public Voice Partner with Health Education England and NHS England. Since March 2020, Fatima has experienced two bereavements.

Two academics with interest in this field are also on our panel. Dr Nicholas Long is an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the London School of Economics, and Dr Emily Harrop is a Research Associate at Cardiff University with a focus on end-of-life care and bereavement.

Have you been bereaved during the COVID-19 pandemic? Anyone in the UK bereaved since the 16th March, of any cause, is invited to participate in a new national study that aims to give voice to all those grieving at this time, and ensure they are supported – please visit www.covidbereavement.com