Help in Bereavement – Supporting bereaved people in Hampshire

Patricia Wakeford - Legal Director at Enable Law
2 minute read

Written by

Patricia Wakeford - Legal Director at Enable Law

On 27 January I met three of the volunteers from Help In Bereavement (HiB). This is a charity in Portsmouth that was set up in 1979 ‘as a response to the perceived needs of those suffering the grief, loneliness and social isolation caused by losing someone they love’. Jan is the Chair of Trustees; Jo is the secretary and Jean helps with admin. They do have the use of a community centre room for trustee meetings, but otherwise; all work from their own homes.

I was really impressed by their dedication. I also found out that they will help people after the loss of a loved pet.

Covid significantly reduced what the charity could do as they generally visit people in their homes. However, they still helped people by email or telephone until meetings were able to recommence.

The charity offers a free visiting service that covers Portsmouth, Gosport, Fareham and Havant. The ‘visitors’ are ordinary people from many walks of life. They give their time free of charge and many have suffered a bereavement or bereavements themselves. They receive specialist training to recognise the needs of those who have been bereaved. They are not counsellors, but provide a listening service.

The aim of HiB is to provide visits for as long as is needed to enable the bereaved person to reach a point where they feel able to resume contact with the outside world. They estimate that they provide 4,000 visiting hours per year which must make an incredible difference to those that they visit.

This page on their website provides details of the next steps if you do suffer a bereavement including the governmental advice page.

There is also a contact page for anyone who would like to volunteer as a Visitor.

Help in Bereavement is a Registered Charity (Number 1062269) and as such relies on volunteers and donations. If you would like to make a  donation, please visit their donation page.

It was a real pleasure to meet Jan, Jo and Jean to find out more about the amazing work that they do. I look forward to forging closer links with HiB.

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