HOW TO CONDOLE AND SUPPORT GRIEVING FAMILIES IN COVID-19 TIMES

HOW TO CONDOLE AND SUPPORT GRIEVING FAMILIES IN COVID-19 TIMES

The coronavirus disease,(COVID-19) pandemic has caused a huge disruption the world over, in everyone’s lives. The disease has created a new reality which unfortunately dictates how people grief the loss of a loved one and how family and friends condole with the bereaved. We are in the times of social and physical distancing. A very difficult time! Ordinarily, grief is isolating and more deeply so during this new reality we are in-the social and physical distancing reality.

In the wake of the virus, a new normal has set in dictating how social gatherings, meetings, weddings and even funerals are conducted. Unlike before COVID-19, when family and friends would gather to condole with the bereaved, offer a shoulder to cry on, pray for the departed in a group, the situation is now different. Totally different and it undoubtedly exacerbates the situation. In the new normal times, gatherings of more than 15 people are prohibited and this means the bereaved families are somehow left alone to bury their loved ones.

Even if there is never a ‘good time’ for death to strike, the times we are living in today bespeak of dreadful moments. It is even scaring.

But even with so much dread-how do you express your sympathy when bereavement strikes. Consider the following:

MAKE A PHONE OR VIDEO CALL

You want your condolences to be personal and direct. Take time to text or call your grieving friend or family. In the times we are in today, it is the most effective way to show you care. Though we would advise texting before you make a call make sure you deliver your sympathies in voice or video. 

WhatsApp, FaceTime, Zoom, and other social platforms providing video or audio messaging are all useful tools we can utilize to communicate with the bereaved and help them feel validated in their grief.

OFFER CONDOLENCES IN WRITTEN FORM

Sending a physical card with a well-crafted consoling message would suffice. Not anymore. However, technology has gifted us the ability to send an eCard through WhatsApp, email or other social media platforms complete with a voice message, even with appropriate music. The new normal has occasioned creating online pages where the deceased obituary and related information is provided. This enables you to leave a message of condolences at the deceased’s person obituary page or website. Such messages will be read by the deceased family and feel strengthened.

SEND A DONATION

Death, in spite of causing grief and sadness, causes financial strain and even more so during this coronavirus pandemic where resources are scarce. Being social beings, offering financial support to the bereaved family not only cushions them from financial constraints but also reduce the stresses associated with death. Thanks to technology, it is now easy to send financial support through mobile money platforms.

SPONSOR A LIVE STREAMING PACKAGE FOR THE FUNERAL SERVICE

With many people unable to attend the funeral service, we can offer an online live streaming of the burial ceremony and rites, thereby according family and friends an opportunity to participate and offer their last respects digitally. Under the circumstances it also helps with the closure.

SEND FLOWERS OR PLANT A TREE

You know your friends or family members better. You know what would be meaningful in times of bereavement. Send that bouquet of flowers if it helps. Plant a tree in remembrance. A shopping delivered at the door could mean everything to a bereaved family. Show the bereaved you have them in your mind.

Above all:

PRAY WITH AND FOR THEM

Prayer moves mountains. Call or record yourself praying for the grieving person.

See, you may not be physically present to condole with the bereaved. But there is much you can do to reduce the sense of loss. Stand with the bereaved. There are so many ways you can do so. Over to you!

WE ARE THERE TO OFFER SUPPORT AND SERVICES. JUST CALL US

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