Information Hubs Launched Across Dudley to Offer Support for Bereaved People

Five new bereavement information hubs helping people to deal with loss and grief will be launched across Dudley next month.

The hubs will be based at the What? Centre, St Thomas Church (Stourbridge), Whitehouse Cancer Support Centre and Coseley Family Centre, with the latter being facilitated by us. The hubs will offer an informal, friendly place for people to meet and talk to others who have experienced loss and grief.

It comes after the success of our four bereavement information hubs which have been set up in the last 18 months across Wolverhampton and South Staffordshire. Drop in sessions will be held at each of the venues across Dudley once a month to encourage people to come together and support each other in times of crises and loss.

Compton Care Partnership Development Manager Marianne Grant said: “Since the development in 2017 of Bereavement Information Hubs in Wolverhampton and South Staffordshire, we have seen an increasing number of people and organisations approach us to help address the gaps in support for communities affected by loss and grief.

“We are working in partnership to create safe and welcoming volunteer led Bereavement Information Hubs to support diverse communities throughout Dudley. In addition, it is also our intention for two of the hubs to specifically focus on supporting young people up to the age of 25 and people from the LGBTQ community.”

Funding for the hubs has been secured from Dudley Council Innovation Fund to expand the community model of Bereavement Information Hubs in the borough with each one being facilitated by a minimum of two volunteers.

Julie Duffy, Chief Executive of the What? Centre said: “We are delighted to be working with Compton Care, Whitehouse Cancer Support and Mary Stevens Hospice in the delivery of Bereavement Information Hubs across the Dudley Borough.

“There is very little support out there for children and young people around bereavement. They may have lots of questions they want to ask but can’t ask family or they may just want to talk with an adult or to meet other young people and support each other. With the Young Person’s Hub at the What? Centre, children and young people between the ages of 10 and 25 will have access to this support as well as access to specialist bereavement counselling.”

Each of the four hubs will be created to feel welcoming in a café-style format to allow people to relax and feel comfortable enough to talk about their experiences. The sessions will be facilitated by a minimum of two fully-trained volunteers.

Caroline Webb, Chief Executive at White House Cancer Support, said: “We see the devastating impact bereavement can have upon individuals and their families. Each of the partner organisations make a tremendous difference to people through the support we offer, however by working more collectively and closely together, we can share knowledge and resources giving us the opportunity to reach and support a wider cohort of people who are experiencing pain.

“Compton Care’s Bereavement Information Hubs have been running successfully for a considerable amount of time in Wolverhampton and South Staffordshire and by working together we will strive to ensure that the same resource; if not more, is available to the people of Dudley.”

Marie Faux, Senior Sister at Mary Stevens Hospice added: “Mary Stevens Hospice is excited to be working in collaboration with our partners across the wider Dudley Borough. Our Stourbridge Bereavement Hub will offer a supportive environment for local people experiencing loss and grief, signposting and access to information and opportunities to manage their health and wellbeing as well as the potential to make new friends”.

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