With attendance continuing to grow at its day sessions, after relaunching the service post pandemic, Talking Elephants groups are now run at nine locations across the region. Now the need to offer group sessions for those unable to attend in the day, due to work or carer commitments, has become a priority for the funeral firm.
The first evening sessions will be introduced at Stopsley and at Luton, starting in October. The groups provide individuals with an informal environment, easily accessible and free, for those experiencing loss and grief to meet up and chat with those also bereaved.
Whilst this will make the groups more accessible to all those suffering from bereavement within the Luton and Stopsley areas, there are further plans to expand the evening service to other branches in the region within the coming months.
The announcement of the new sessions come at a time when figures have reported an increase in social isolation and loneliness following a bereavement during the Covid-19 pandemic. This is why it’s important that such group bereavement services are available.
Charmian Alexander, Director at Neville Funeral commented: “We are proud to offer evening sessions as part of our Talking Elephants bereavement service. Since our first group meeting in Luton five years ago, our groups have grown in popularity and what’s lovely to see is that some of our original members are still attending today.
“Our sessions are run by volunteers from our own business and also the wider community, and without them, we would not be able to continue to provide our support to adults and young people who are struggling with bereavement.
“Providing alternative time slots helps to offer a solution for those who would like to join the sessions but are unable to do so during the day.
“If we’ve learned anything from the passing of Her Majesty The Queen, it’s that dealing with grief and loss can be a very personal journey, and we believe that everyone should have access to support.
“Our sessions offer a relaxed, informal safe space in which to talk freely to people that are in the same position. Many have told us how helpful they have found Talking Elephants, and some people have even gone on to make deep and lasting friendships with others who have been in a similar situation.”
Neville Funerals has run the groups across its local communities in Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire since 2015, receiving positive feedback from attendees who said the groups provide a friendly environment to share their experiences as well as listen to others.
The first evening sessions will take place at St. Christopher’s Church, Stockingstone Road in Stopsley on 4th October from 7.00 pm to 8.30 pm (and then at the same time on the first Tuesday of every month) and also at Luton on 18th October, from 6.00 pm to 8.00 pm, at Neville Funerals head office on Marsh Road (and then also on the third Tuesday of each month). These sessions are open for anyone to attend.