Bereavement resources for parents and school staff
Supporting bereaved children through the Coronavirus Pandemic
Losing someone close to us is never easy. Things are even harder at the moment because those grieving rituals we usually engage in to bring us some comfort and closure cannot happen in quite the same way at the moment. For anyone who is experiencing a bereavement in these extraordinary times, this will be especially challenging due to the uncertainty brought about by Covid-19 and the restrictions it brings.
Also losing a loved one to a new virus that we do not really understand completely is even more frightening. We hear lots of statistics on the news but when one of those numbers read out is an actual person who is no longer here it really is very hard. You might have lost someone due to an important operation being cancelled due to the Corona Virus, there are many indirect but linked deaths too. You are not alone. With the help of our mental health team here at the teaching school we have gathered a plethora of useful bereavement resources including, books, resources, websites and information to help those who have lost someone or to help you support someone recently bereaved. We hope you find something that will support you through this very sad time.T o support children, we also need to take care of ourselves. Whatever happens, there are always people to help and listen. As well as resources, books, activities and information, we have also included a list of helplines offering support for adults as well.
Books and Workbooks for Children
- Muddles, Puddles and Sunshine: Your activity book to help when someone has died (EY) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Muddles-Puddles-Sunshine-Paperback-Activity/dp/1869890582
- Always and Forever (EY) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Always-Forever-Alan-Durant/dp/0552567655
- Grandad’s Island (EY) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Grandads-Island-Benji-Davies/dp/1471119955
- When Dinosaurs Die: A guide to Understanding Death (KS1) https://www.amazon.co.uk/When-Dinosaurs-Die-Understanding-Families/dp/0316119555
- Luna’s Red Hat: A Storybook to Help Children Cope with Loss and Suicide (KS1) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lunas-Red-Hat-Illustrated-Storybook/dp/1849056293
- The Invisible String (KS1) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVp9ZBmPu8o https://www.amazon.co.uk/Invisible-String-Patrice-Karst/dp/031648623X
- The Invisible String Workbook (KS1) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Invisible-String-Workbook-Creative-Activities/dp/0316524913
- Michael Rosen’s Sad Book (KS1) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Michael-Rosens-Sad-Book-Rosen/dp/1406317845
- The Dragonfly Story (KS1) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Dragonfly-Story-Explaining-children-families/dp/199999650X
- Vicky Angel (KS2) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Vicky-Angel-Jacqueline-Wilson/dp/0440867800
- Bridge to Terabithia (KS2) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bridge-Terabithia-Katherine-Paterson/dp/0060734019
- When Someone Has a Very Serious Illness (KS2) https://www.amazon.co.uk/When-Someone-Very-Serious-Illness/dp/0962050245
- When Someone Very Special Dies (KS2) https://www.amazon.co.uk/WHEN-SOMEONE-VERY-SPECIAL-DIES/dp/0962050202
- The Day the Sea Went Out and Never Came Back (EY-KS2) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Day-Went-Never-Came-Back/dp/0863884636
- The Huge Bag of Worries (EY -KS2) https://www.amazon.co.uk/Huge-Bag-Worries-Virginia-Ironside/dp/0340903171
Healing Grief by Barbara Ward https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0091778395/ref=as_li_ss_il
The Courage to Grieve by Judy Tatelbaum https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0749309369/ref=as_li_ss_il
The Early Days of Grieving by Derek Nuttal https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0232526443/ref=as_li_ss_il
The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1846041058/ref=as_li_ss_il
Through Grief by Elizabeth Collick https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0232516820/ref=as_li_ss_il
You’ll Get Over It – The Rage of Bereavement by Virginia Ironside https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0140236082/ref=as_li_ss_il
When Bad Things Happen to Good People by Harold S. Kushner https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0330490559/ref=as_li_ss_il
Cruse Bereavement Care
Cruse Bereavement Care exists to promote the well-being of bereaved people and to enable anyone bereaved by death to understand their grief and cope with their loss. The organisation provides counselling and support. It offers information, advice, education and training services. Visit their website for more details.
Daytime help line: 0844 477 9400
Email support: firstname.lastname@example.org
Young Person’s Helpline: freephone 0808 808 1677
The Compassionate Friends
The Compassionate Friends (TCF) is an organisation of bereaved parents and their families offering understanding, support and encouragement to others after the death of a child or children. Their help line is always answered by a bereaved parent who is there to listen and can also put you in touch with a Local Contact and provide information about TCF’s services.
Helpline: 08451 23 23 04 (Every day: 10.00 – 16.00 and 19.00 – 22.00)
Email (information and support): email@example.com
As well as providing a general helpline, the Samaritans have groups in some areas for people who have been bereaved by suicide. Email, telephone (08457 90 90 90 ) or write to them:
Freepost RSRB-KKBY-CYJK, Chris, PO Box 90 90, Stirling, FK8 2SA.
Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide
Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide provides emotional and practical support to those bereaved by the suicide of a close relative or friend. The aim is to provide a safe, confidential environment in which bereaved people can share their experiences and feelings, so giving and gaining support from each other. It is a self-help organisation and many of those helping have, themselves, been bereaved by suicide.
Call the National Helpline: 0844 561 6855 (Available 9am – 9pm every day)
Email firstname.lastname@example.org after the death of a child or children.
Supporting people bereaved by suicide – *** new booklet
Finding the Words is a new booklet which suggest ways family, friends and colleagues can offer support to someone who has been bereaved by suicide. It has been written by Dr Alexandra Pitman, based on her research findings, and a writer with personal experience, Maxine Roper; the editor is Amy Meadows. It includes sections on why suicide is a unique loss, the fact that everyone grieves differently, things to avoid and finding help.
You can download Finding the Words free of charge
The INQUEST Handbook
The INQUEST Handbook is a resource for families and friends dealing with the aftermath of a sudden bereavement.
You access the handbook online here. http://info.inquest.org.uk/handbook/
A charitable initiative for those who are suddenly bereaved and the people caring for them. Information includes free advice and guidance for carers, professionals, in addition to seminars and training for professionals
Winston’s Wish – https://www.winstonswish.org/supporting-you/support- -schools/
Supporting bereaved children and young people, the organisation’s website includes various downloadable resources including:
A guide to supporting grieving children and young people in education
A strategy for schools – positive responses to death
The Charter for bereaved children
Child Bereavement UK – https://www.childbereavementuk.org/
Supporting bereaved children through difficult times information sheet
Ways to get support include an app available from Google Play for young people aged 11-25 years
Sue Ryder has an online support community for those dealing with a bereavement and a counselling service
Psychology Today blog post
Thoughts on coping with a bereavement during Covid-19
Greater Manchester Bereavement Service and associated website https://greater-manchester-bereavement-service.org.uk/ are now live.
More useful resources for lesson planning
Guidance from Winston’s Wish:
How to tell a child that someone has died due to Coronavirus https://www.winstonswish.org/telling-a-child-someone-died-from-coronavirus/
How to say goodbye when a funeral isn’t possible
Child Bereavement UK has a range of resources on the Coronavirus section of their website. This includes guidance on supporting children through difficult times, what to do when you can’t visit someone who is ill and holding a funeral for someone when you cannot meet in person.
There’s also a guide to supporting early years, plus primary and secondary school-aged children with bereavement including how to support the family:
Supporting a bereaved pupil in Primary school
Supporting a bereaved pupil in secondary school
Supporting a bereaved person in further education
Managing a sudden death
Developing a bereavement policy
Managing bereavement in schools
Age appropriate reading: