Co-op’s ‘Small Steps’ bereavement group celebrates first birthday

13 July 2017

A bereavement group set up by Co-op Funeralcare in Dorchester, is set to celebrate its first birthday on July 18th.

Co-op’s ‘Small Steps’ coffee morning was introduced by Funeral Arrangers, Naomi Kelly and Angie Ratcliffe, who work at the funeral home on Great Western Road. The group, set up last year, provides Co-op Funeralcare with a way of supporting members of its local community through the bereavement process.

Research from the Co-op has found that loneliness is one of the biggest issues facing communities across the UK. With the support of the British Red Cross, Co-op continues to work closely with local communities to help tackle loneliness and the development of bereavement groups such as the ‘Small Steps’ group in Dorchester is another means of confronting the issue.

Naomi Kelly, Co-op Funeral Arranger, said:

“We initially decided to set up Small Steps as we wanted to continue to help local families through their grieving process.

‘’It offers individuals the opportunity to openly discuss how they’re feeling with like-minded people.’’

Angie Ratcliffe, Co-op Funeral Arranger, added:

“People can feel apprehensive towards bereavement groups and expect them to be sombre but the reality is that the conversations are so varied and very often the room is filled with laughter. Members of the public who have suffered a loss, whether a friend, family member or even a pet, are welcome to join us.”

Sue Harwood who is a regular volunteer commented:

“I have been volunteering at Co-op’s ‘Small Steps’ since day one. It’s great to see a range of people coming together to talk about their loved ones and to support each other.”

“Every month, the group meets to talk about everything, from bereavement to what they’re planning to do over the weekend. It’s a great atmosphere and there’s no better way to have a good conversation than over cake and coffee.”

Small Steps Coffee Morning is held at the Dorchester Community Church, Acland Road, Dorchester, DT1 1EF, every third Tuesday of the month between 10am and 12pm. For those who are unable to get there, lifts are offered to the community.

Notes to Editors:

Images are available upon request.

About The Co-op:

The Co-op, one of the world’s largest consumer co-operatives, with interests across food, funerals, insurance, electrical and legal services, has a clear purpose of championing a better way of doing business for you and your communities. Owned by millions of UK consumers, The Co-op operates a total of 3,750 outlets, with more than 70,000 colleagues and an annual turnover of approximately £10 billion. Home to the UK’s leading funeral provider, Co-op Funeralcare conducts almost 100,000 funerals annually across over 1,000 funeral homes. Combined with its leading legal services business, the Co-op is also a national provider of later life products and services ranging from funeral plans, through to wills and probate.

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