Sidmouth families offered free bereavement counselling

Potbury's Funeral Service has launched a new service to help Sidmouth families.

Potbury's Funeral Service has launched a new service to help Sidmouth families. - Credit: Archant

A free bereavement counselling service has been launched to help Sidmouth families.

Residents in the town and the surrounding area who are struggling to come to terms with the loss of a loved one are being offered free support as part of a new scheme being run by Potburys Funeral Service.

The service is being made available to the businesses’ adult clients in Sidmouth as part of a caring partnership between the National Society of Allied and Independent Funeral Directors (SAIF) and bereavement support specialist Professional Help Ltd.

The scheme, which is called SAIFCare, is in response to the growing awareness of the need for many people to seek support following the death of a close friend or relative.

Under SAIFCare, family members will be offered up to six free counselling sessions, which can be used by one person or split between various members of a family. Delivered by a qualified bereavement counsellor, the sessions can take place at a location of the bereaved person’s choosing or by telephone and even online chat and email.

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Andrew Downham, of Potburys Funeral Service and a member of SAIF, said: “As funeral directors, we often see people at the start of their journey of grief and feel we would like to do more to assist, as we know that feelings of sadness and loss don’t end with the funeral.

“This service enables us to go above and beyond for the families in our care in order to ensure they get the support and advice they need at life’s most difficult time.

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“Funeral profession trade association SAIF piloted the service with 13 of its funeral director members last year and quickly identified a need to expand it across a wider area. Funeral directors who are members of the organisation have to opt in to offer the service.”

Terry Tennens, SAIF’s chief executive, said that demand for bereavement counselling was huge.

He added it was from their trial that people really welcomed and relied on the extra support from their funeral direct.

Call Potburys Funeral Service on 01395 513355 for more information.

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