The overall aim of the service is to act as an ‘umbrella’ that the bereaved person can shelter under. A service that can provide them with whatever practical and emotional support is necessary for them to adjust to their changed circumstances, and which can help them to continue to have a fulfilled and enjoyable life.
Impact of bereavement
In recent years there has been a growing appreciation amongst health care professionals of the impact bereavement can have on the mental and physical health of the older person and the detrimental effect it can have on their quality of life. Because of this increased awareness Age UK Wirral has been able to secure funding to create and develop a Bereavement Support and Counselling Service for the older person.
The service is designed to provide both practical assistance and emotional support to the older person following a bereavement. Practical support covers a wide range of issues. We can provide help in registering a death, arranging a funeral, and dealing with other immediate issues. We also provide access to existing Age UK Wirral advice and support services to deal with longer term and more complex matters, and where necessary link with other external agencies to provide assistance for a client. It is not intended that the support worker should make decisions for the client, their role is to provide the client with as much information, help, and support, as they require to enable them to deal with any problems they may have.
Emotional support is provided in two forms; firstly, where appropriate, by providing access to counselling, and secondly by providing a bespoke befriending service.
The provision of a befriending service is a key aspect of the service, as the social isolation of an older person following a bereavement can have a major impact on their mental and physical wellbeing. By carefully matching befrienders to clients, it is hoped that the bereaved person will benefit from the companionship, and over a period of time can be encouraged to re-engage in social activities.
Where the client has deeper emotional problems as a result of bereavement, the service is able to refer clients to trained counsellors, who will visit the client at home or at another agreed venue to provide confidential counselling.
How to be referred
Any older person who has been bereaved can be referred to the service. This can be by means of self-referral; by referral from another family member or friend; or referral by another agency or health/ care worker that they have contact with. The only stipulation is that the bereaved person agrees to being referred to the service.
View Age UK Wirral referral form
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Please print off and complete the form and send it to the address below.
The service is based at the Age UK Wirral office at:
Devonshire Resource Centre
141 Park Road North
Write a letter to the above adress, or:
Tel: 0151 653 1971 (lines open Mon to Fri 9am to 4.30pm)
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com