HELEN LOCKWOOD: Dying Matters awareness week encourages people to open up

Dying happens to everyone, but it’s something we find incredibly difficult to talk about.

A national program underway next week aims to change that, encouraging all of us to openly discuss death, dying and bereavement.

Dying Matters Awareness Week runs from May 2-6 and a series of events will take place across the country.

The theme of this year’s campaign is to be #InAGoodPlace when they die – physically, emotionally, financially, spiritually and most importantly with proper care and support.

Dying Matters believes that there needs to be a fundamental shift in society so that death, dying and bereavement are accepted as a natural part of the cycle of life.

Talking about it is in everyone’s interest, as it can help ensure that we can all get the care and support we want, where we want it, at the end of our lives.

Dying Matters experts say a current lack of openness on this issue is impacting the experiences of those dying or bereaved, and could affect our ability to die where and how we choose.

Bury Hospice is one of many organizations in the borough involved in Dying Matters Awareness Week.

The hospice is committed to helping raise awareness and highlighting all that we do to help our patients and their families across Bury.

Rachael Grimwood, Bury Hospice Educator, said: “As a center of specialist knowledge, Bury Hospice has become a key provider of end-of-life care training.

“We will be hosting sessions for hospice staff throughout the week, culminating in a celebratory afternoon to bring together some of the incredible services that help us provide holistic care.”

We’ll also be taking our supporters behind the scenes to give everyone a taste of the services we offer in a series of ‘Arthur Bear’ posts on Bury Hospice’s social media.

We asked our supporters to name Hospice Ours.

The name we decided to choose was Arthur, suggested by Nick Cooper.

Nick said: “He’s definitely an Arthur.

“The name means bear and also brave, like all those who work and use the Hospice service.

“It’s also the name of my father and my grandfather.”

Next week you can join ‘Arthur Bear’ on his journey of discovery as he learns more about Bury Hospice including our Outreach Service, Inpatient Unit, Complementary Therapy Service, Christie Clinic , bereavement and many other areas of the Hospice.

There will also be a competition where you can like and share our posts and tag three friends for the opportunity to win afternoon tea for two, courtesy of Slattery in Whitefield.

For more information on Dying Matters Awareness Week, go to https://www.hospiceuk.org/our-campaigns/dying-matters