Community

Neville Funerals expands bereavement support group into Bedford

Neville Funerals has expanded its free bereavement support group service, Talking Elephants, into Bedford after “overwhelming attendance” at its eight sites that are currently available.

Talking Elephants provides individuals with accessible, free, local and face-to-face bereavement support and the opportunity to “comfortably engage” with those in the community who are also experiencing loss or who are coping with grief.

Available in Bedford at St Andrews Church, the sessions will be held on the first Thursday of each month. Neville Funerals has run the groups across its local communities in Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Hertfordshire since 2015.

James Witham, branch manager at Neville Funerals, and who is also responsible for managing the new Talking Elephants group launches, said: “Since we reopened the groups in September 2021 following the pandemic, we have seen a significant rise in the number of people walking through the doors, which highlights the value and need for such services.”

Charmian Alexander, director at Neville Funerals, said: “Support for the bereaved can be often overlooked. With the world how it is today, it’s vital that we can expand our support radius to include Bedford and give our local community that extra support they need in difficult times.

“Following the amazing response that we have had from the communities these groups are already operating in, now is the perfect time to expand into a new location to offer additional help and support at a very local level – directly in the heart of the Bedford community. And we’re so pleased that the first session was such a success, with a really great turnout.”

She added: “It’s important to note that this isn’t a counselling service, it’s an opportunity to meet and share as little or as much as you please – an open door to those that just need to walk through and feel that they are not alone in their grief. We hope by introducing Talking Elephants to Bedford, we can provide the comfort and support other communities have cherished.”

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