Bereavement affects people in different ways. There are a wide range of Charities across the UK specialising in supporting families in their time of grief.

Bereavement Charities

Below is a list of UK based charities that all specialise in different areas of bereavement.

Cruse Bereavement Support is one of the UK’s largest bereavement charities, with more than 4,000 volunteers nationwide.You can talk with their grief counsellors on the phone, by online chat or at one of their 80 branches across the UK.

Sue Ryder charity has been offering support since World War II. Since then, the charity has grown on a national level inthe UK and continues to offer support to those who need palliative care, online resources, and counselling services to help people through their grief.

The Good Grief Trust is run by the bereaved for the bereaved. They offer a wide range of support to anyone who is experiencing grief. Their Virtual Good Grief Cafés provide a safe space where you can talk with others online. They also run specific café sessions for the
LGBTQ community. You can use their online directory to find specialist bereavement support organisations and services in your area.

GriefShare runs seminars and support groups for people who are bereaved to share their experiences. While most of their groups are in
Northern Ireland, they also have groups in London, Birmingham, Sheffield,Bangor, Preston and Cambridge.

At a Loss is there to help anyone who is bereaved find the support they need. Their website has links to a variety of support services and resources for adults and children. The charity also provides training to youth workers, teachers and church volunteers to help them support people who are grieving.

Samaritans is there to support anyone who’s struggling to cope or who needs someone to listen without judgement. Their free phoneline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, ready to help people in crisis. You can also contact the Samaritans by email or by letter if this is easier for you.

Bereavement Charities - Widows and Widowers

WAY (Windowed and Young) helps anyone aged 50 or under who has lost their spouse or partner. The charity provides peer-to-peer support including a confidential support line and closed Facebook group. They also organise social events and meet-ups to help widows and widowers cope with loneliness.

Gingerbread is a charity for single parents. They provide a range of emotional and practical support, as well as campaigning for equal rights for all types of family. While bereavement support is a small part of what they do, they can help you to find the right support. They're also there to help you adjust to the practicalities of raising children as a single parent.

Bereavement Charities - Parents who've lost a child

The Compassionate Friends (TCF) is a charitable organisation of bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents dedicated to the support and care of other similarly bereaved family members who have suffered the death of a child or children from a month old and and from any cause.

The Child Death Helpline is a free telephone helpline for anyone who’s been affected by the death of a child. Trained bereavement counsellors are available during the daytime and evenings, as well as at weekends. They are supported by Great Ormond Street Hospital and the Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust.

A Child of Mine provides emotional and practical support to bereaved parents and families, working in partnership with health care professionals to help improve care and support available when a child dies.

Saying Goodbye the primary division of the Mariposa Trust, provides support for anyone who is affected by baby loss, at any stage of pregnancy, at birth or in infancy, whether the loss be recent or historic. 

Sands is the UK’s leading stillbirth and neonatal charity. Bereaved parents can get support by phone, on the mobile app
and in their online communities. There are also more than 100 support groups
across the UK where you can share your experiences with others.

Lullaby Trust raises awareness of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and promotes safer sleep for babies.They also provide bereavement support for anyone who’s been affected by the sudden death of a baby or young child. You can call their helpline to speak with a bereavement counsellor.

Miscarriage Association was founded in 1982 by a group of people who had experienced miscarriage and continues toprovides support
and information to anyone affected by miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy or molar pregnancy and to raise awareness and promote good practice in medical care.

SLOW (Surving the loss of your world) a charity for bereaved families, is tailored to parents who’ve lost a child. They run regular support groups in London and on Zoom for other families across the UK. All of their groups are run by specially trained facilitators who have experienced the loss of a child themselves. They also recognise the importance of helping young children who have lost a sibling with their SLOWsibs groups. Here,children can meet and take part in activities while exploring their feelings and helping them to feel less alone. 

Bereavement Charities – Children who have lost a parent or sibling

Childhood Bereavement Network (CBN) is the hub for those working with bereaved children, young people and their families across the UK.. They connect bereaved children and their families with the support they need through local groups and counselling and also campaign for change and lobby the government to take action. Through their research and campaigns they’re getting schools, workplaces and other organisations thinking about the way we talk to children about grief and bereavement.

Child Bereavement UK founded in 1994, helps children and young people up to the age of 25 to cope with grief. They also provide support to parents who have lost a child. Children and their parents can speak to a bereavement counsellor by phone, video or instant messenger. In some areas of the UK you can also attend support groups with other bereaved families.

Winston’s Wish founded in 1992, provides emotional and practical support to children who have lost a parent or sibling. They also help the families of bereaved children.

Grief Encounter helps children and young people who have lost a loved one. They provide immediate 1-to-1 support by phone, online chat or email. They also provide resources and training to help parents, carers and teachers help children who are grieving.

Sibling Support helps children and young people who’ve lost a brother or sister. Their website includes a questions and answers section that gives age-appropriate answers to the questions children may have about bereavement.

Charities specialising in bereavement from cancer

MacmillanCancer Support helps people living with cancer by providing practical support. They also offer some useful bereavement resources for people who have lost a friend or family member to cancer. These include easy read storybooks to help you explain dying and grief to children or people with learning difficulties.

The Loss Foundation is one of the few charities for bereavement that specialises in supporting people followingthe death of a loved one to cancer. They offer online support groups and workshops, walk and talk events, retreats, therapy sessions and their one-to-one buddy system where you can talk to someone who’s gone through a similar experience. All of their services are free of charge (apart from their
retreats where attendees need to cover the costs).

Maggie’s is a cancer support charity with centres across the UK. While they focus mainly on helping those living with cancer,they also provide bereavement support to people who have lost someone to cancer. You can also read this useful article they’ve written about cancer and grief.

Specialist Bereavement Charities

SOBS (Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide) supports people over 18 years of age who have lost a loved one to suicide. You can access support by email, by joining their online support groups or by going to a local support group. They also run retreat events to help you find some relaxation. Their bereavement virtual support sessions are specifically for men to share their experiences in a safe space.

Lone Twin Network is a support network specifically for twins whose twin has died (sometimes known as twin-less twins). The group is open to twins over 18 who have lost a twin unborn, during childhood or as an adult. The network runs meet-ups throughout the year at different locations across the UK.

Find local bereavement charities and support near you

  • There may also be smaller local bereavement charities where you live. You can find them by using The Good Grief Trust’s UK map to search for bereavement organisations in your area. They list small local charities and also local branches of national charities.
  • Talking to your local faith leader - even if you don’t usually attend a place of worship, they’ll be able to offer you support.
  • Find other grief organisations and charities near you using GOV.UK’s directory.

Guides to Bereavement

MND Association have produced an information sheet "Finding Your Way with Bereavement" that can be downloaded here.

Rethink Mental Illness have produced a guide "Coping with loss to suicide" available here.

British Heart Foundation provide a guide to all aspects of bereavement.

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