Dying Matters Awareness Week overcomes stigma

Gary Williams speaks of the importance of food at funerals SUS-150528-151321001
Gary Williams speaks of the importance of food at funerals SUS-150528-151321001

Hastings care home, Grosvenor House, embraced the annual UK Dying Matters Awareness Week, which aims to encourage people to write a will, record funeral preferences and tell loved ones their wishes.

Grosvenor House Activities Coordinator, Arnelda John, said the event (held on May 20) encouraged relatives, family, and staff to overcome the stigma of talking about death and the importance of food at funerals.

Arnelda said; “Every culture has different funeral traditions and customs and this extends to food. Whether it is used to send the soul to another world with a full stomach or to provide sustenance for those who have come to mourn the deceased, food is a primary way of expressing the past, present and future.”

Gary Williams of Ambience Catering was invited to talk about organising catering following the departure of a loved one. He spoke about the choice of menus, home-cooked, locally sourced food and discreet serving staff at what may be a stressful time for family and friends. Mr Williams also provided a range of buffet samples for people to taste.

Arnelda added: “One relative said it was good to talk about these things, to hear a loved ones wishes, to make you better prepared.”