Covid-19 useful bereavement links and resources

At this difficult time, Leeds Bereavement Forum is collecting a list of local and national resources* which we hope will be useful for those affected by bereavement.

This list will be updated regularly and we would encourage organisations to share their resources and information – please do contact us if you have anything to add or update.

Direct Bereavement Support

West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership Grief and Loss Support Service | Is for anyone suffering any form of grief and loss, or those worried about losing someone, whether this relates to a family member, friend or member of their community. Practical and emotional support and advice is available from 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week via the freephone number 0808 1963833, or online chat facility The team can offer support and help connect you with organisations local to you, who can offer additional help where needed. This service replaces the Covid-19 Telephone Support Line previously offered by St Gemma’s Hospice and Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice.

Details of the Grief and Loss Support line available in Punjabi (.pdf) Posters in other languages can be found at West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health Care Partnership website.

Anne Robson Trust | They know that facing the end of life can leave you feeling isolated and alone. Their trained helpline volunteers are there to listen and support you if you or a loved one is facing the end of life at home, in a hospital, care home or hospice. National Helpline open 12pm to 6pm – Monday to Friday 0808 801 0688.

BAMEStream Bereavement Support Service | Free online or telephone bereavement support is being offered by Nafsiyat Intercultural Therapy Centre for people, (aged over 18), from Black, Asian and other minority ethnic (BAME) communities, experiencing bereavement and loss due to the Covid-19 pandemic. You can refer to the service through their website referral form or by telephone 020 7263 6947.

Carers Leeds | All support groups, events, drop-ins, meetings and other face to face activities are now cancelled until further notice. The Carers Leeds advice line – 0113 380 4300 is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 9.00am-4.30pm, Wed 8.00am – 6.30pm. You can email the advice line – for support during these times.

Charlies-Angel-Centre Foundation | Is now able to offer face-to-face, telephone and zoom counselling. All the support groups at the Centre have been cancelled but support can be found through their social media. A telephone bereavement referral form can be found on their website.

Child Bereavement UK in Leeds  | Continues to offer children, young people and their families therapeutic bereavement support via telephone and virtually. Their established Group for Young People who are bereaved is now being offered virtually. They have a Leeds helpline 0113 350 3598 and Leeds email available to offer support. Nationally there is the Child Bereavement UK website filled with resources, LIVECHAT and a national helpline. For young people they have a Child Bereavement UK Young People’s website

Cross Gates and District Good Neighbours’ Scheme CIO | is currently offering its monthly bereavement peer support group via Zoom. Email or call 0113 260 6565 for details.

Cruse Bereavement Support | National Freephone Helpline 0808 808 1677. Now available seven days per week: Monday-Friday 9.30am-5pm (excluding bank holidays), with extended hours on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings, until 8pm. Weekends 10am-2pm. They also offer online Cruse Chat which runs from Monday – Friday 9am-9pm. You can still contact Cruse Bereavement Support Leeds via phone and email as normal.

End of Life Doula UK | Is available to provide volunteer non-medical Doula support to any person by telephone.

Full Circle Funerals| offer a monthly bereavement support group via Zoom on the first Wednesday of the month from 5pm. Please contact Ruth on 01943 262626 or email for further details.

GriefChat | GriefChat is a safe online space for grieving or bereaved people to be able to share their story, explore their feelings and be supported by a qualified bereavement counsellor. In addition to this, GriefChat can help bereaved people to consider if they need additional support and where to get this from. GriefChat is free of charge and is open Monday-Friday, 9am-9pm (UK time) to grieving or bereaved people.

Leeds Bereavement Forum Directory of Services | Our local and national list of over 100 bereavement support organsations. Please be aware all of these services will have had to change the way they are working at this time.

Maggie’s Leeds | Maggie’s Leeds Bereavement Course is a six-session course spread over eight weeks which provides a safe space to talk to other people who have lost someone to cancer and develop your ways of coping. If you would like to speak to them about the course, drop in to the Centre or call 0113 457 8364.

National Bereavement Service | Has launched a grief support and counselling capability designed to offer charities a bereavement counselling helpline for their service users. Many charities lack the resources to offer a full-time support and counselling helpline and the move by National Bereavement Service is designed to help third sector organisations provide a dedicated free-phone number, giving people direct access to bereavement support from 9am to 6pm Monday to Friday and 10am to 2pm on Saturday. Support is available on their helpline 0800 0246 121, email or online through their website chat function.

NHS Staff Bereavement Support Line | A confidential bereavement support line, operated by Hospice UK and free to access from 8am – 8pm, seven days a week – call 0300 303 4434. 

Sands Stillbirth and Neonatal Death Charity | Sands has cancelled all face-to-face support group meetings and other events across the UK. You can access support from Sands via: Freephone Helpline 0808 164 3332 | email | Online community | Online resources | Mobile app

Sudden | Due to increasing demand and funding pressures, they are having to prioritise care for those already in the service and so they are sadly unable to accept new cases in April. Sudden is a charitable initiative for suddenly bereaved people and the people caring for them. During the current pandemic they are focussed on supporting people bereaved by COVID-19 and all people suddenly bereaved by other causes and who are suffering from the pandemic challenges of isolation during ‘lock downs’ and challenges of restrictions: restrictions on visiting people before they die, being close to their bodies, and memorialising in normal gatherings. Their helpline is open Monday-Friday, 10am-4pm on 0800 2600 400.

Sue Ryder Online Community | You are not alone. If someone you love is dying or has died, this Online Community is a place to share experiences, get things off your chest, ask questions and chat to people who understand.

The Market Place | Pre-Booked Face-to-Face Drop-In Sessions are now available for ages 11-25. Telephone Support – 30 minute support sessions for ages 11-17 is also available. You can book an appointment through their website. 

UK Counselling Network CIC | Based in Drighlington is continuing to offer support to their clients using online or telephone counselling. If you need support please contact them via their website or leave a message on 0113 285 2899.

Funeral Updates

Funerals – Leeds City Council – Arrange a Funeral 

Coronavirus: organising a meaningful funeral | Quaker Social Action

Covid-19 and Cemeteries and Crematoria – Frequently Asked Questions | Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management

Coronavirus Updates | The United Synagogue, engaging members of local Jewish communities.

Guidance for handing body following death from Covid-19 Muslim deaths (.pdf) | National Burial Council

Social isolation and funerals: Some information and guidance (.pdf) | David Buck, Spiritual Care Co-ordinator, Sue Ryder – Wheatfields Hospice

Tutorial: How to arrange and video stream a funeral on Facebook during the COVID-19 pandemic | My Wishes

Questions about funerals during COVID-19 | National Association of Funeral Directors


A good death’ during the Covid-19 pandemic in the UK: a report on key findings and recommendations | The London School of Economics and Political Science

Bereavement – How other people can help | Care for the Family

Compassionate and informative telephone calls during COVID 19 | Forum Central

Coronavirus: dealing with bereavement and grief |  A list of useful resources from Cruse Bereavement Care

Coronavirus (COVID-19) if you’re affected by terminal illness | Marie Curie

Covid-19 Bereavement | Sudden, Supporting people after sudden death including Covid-19

Covid-19 Support for Professionals | Leeds Palliative Care Network

Death Cafe and Covid-19 |

Dying Matters #BeforeTheirTime | hashtag to share resources and offer support for anyone who loses a close friend or relative at this time, especially if it’s sudden or earlier than expected

Faith Communities and Coronavirus | The Inter Faith Network

Help with Funeral Costs | The latest information and guidance from Leeds City Council to help arrange a funeral during the COVID-19 pandemic (.pdf)

How to Cope with Bereavement During the COVID-19 Pandemic | Psychology Today

If you were suddenly taken very ill, how would they know… (.pdf) | Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Keeping in touch when you can’t be with someone who is so ill that they might die | National Bereavement Alliance

Looking after your mental health during the Coronavirus outbreak | Mental Health Foundation

Making decisions about treatment -Coronavirus (COVID-19) | Compassion in Dying

My Wishes | MyWishes’ goal is to ensure that everyone documents what they would like to happen to their physical estate, their digital estate, the care they may require in the future, and the care of any dependents they may have (children, pets etc).

Sharing information about Grief & COVID-19 | Network Europe

Supporting yourself and others: coping with death and grief during the Covid 19 pandemic (.pdf) | The British Psychological Society

Talking about death during Covid-19 | The order of the good death

The effect of funeral practices on bereaved friends and relatives’ mental health and bereavement: implications for COVID-19 | National Institute for Health Research and the University of Bristol

We will have to talk about Dying: Covid 19 graphic (.pdf) and We will have to talk about Dying: Covid 19 PowerPoint (.pptx) | created by Dr Lara Mitchell, Consultant Geriatrician and Clinical Lead and Dr Caroline Cochrane, Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Head of psychological Services NHS Borders as part of Scottish Quality and Safety Fellowship

When Someone Dies from Coronavirus | Free downloadable resource from Books Beyond Words for families and carers. For someone who struggles with words, there are barriers to getting the health or social care and support. By telling the whole story in pictures, Books Beyond Words gives people the chance to work together and explore situations.

Support for Children and Young People

Coronavirus – supporting children video and Supporting bereaved children through difficult times leaflet (.pdf) | Child Bereavement UK

Coronavirus: supporting bereaved children and young people | Winston’s Wish

Coronavirus: children and young people | Cruse Bereavement Care

Coronavirus: general advice and support | Childline

Coronavirus advice and mental health support | Young Minds

Children’s Guide to Coronavirus (.pdf) | Children’s Commissioner

Free information book explaining the coronavirus to children, illustrated by Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler | Nosy Crow

Coronavirus – Explained for Children | Animation aimed at children bereaved by Covid-19, Belfast Health and Social Care Trust

Helping families to deal with death | Storybook and Workbook around bereavement by Covid-19 available to download, Phoenix Education Consultancy

Hospice and Hospital Care

Coronavirus: Guidance on Visiting the Hospice | St Gemma’s Hospice

How we can help | Sue Ryder Wheatfields Hospice

Coronavirus/Covid-19 Update | Martin House Hospice

Coronavirus Guidance (COVID-19) | Hospice UK

Visiting Times | Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

*Many thanks to Childhood Bereavement Network for providing several of the links above.

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