Adult Counselling and Bereavement Services

Coronavirus: Dealing with bereavement and grief

Over the past several months, we have all experienced dramatic changes in our way of life. Dealing with ongoing uncertainties and changing rules can create anxiety about what this means for each of us. On a daily basis we are confronted with unprecedented scale of loss of life. Being bereaved can be a lonely time at any time and the current situation can make it more difficult.

Information to help you deal with bereavement and loss at this time can be found on Cruse Bereavement Care website here.

Information and links found at the bottom of this page might also be helpful to you.

Who is the service available for?

The Bereavement Support Service is available throughout the Highlands for anyone who has been bereaved by the death of a relative or friend cared for by Highland Hospice, as an in-patient, or as someone who used any of the Hospice services. It is equally available to the family or friends of former patients of specialist nurses involved in palliative care across the Highlands. It is available irrespective of when the person may have died.

If you are unsure whether this applies to you, please make contact and we can clarify things.

Making contact

Generally speaking, when someone in whose care the Hospice has had direct involvement dies, a member of the Bereavement Team will make contact with the family approximately six or eight weeks afterwards.

If you wish to make use of the service, or would like to discuss any aspect of what we offer, please write, phone, or email, and ask for the Bereavement Support Team. Your message will be passed to us and a member of the team will be in contact with you as soon as possible.

If you are a healthcare professional and would like to refer someone to the Bereavement Service you can use the this form.

Enquiries can be made to Ruth Foster, Bereavement Officer, on 07709 717586 or email bereavement@highlandhospice.org.uk.

Services available

Individual Counselling

Counselling is available for people in bereavement. This is usually offered on an individual basis and offers an opportunity, in a confidential setting, to explore and address the personal issues which may be making the experience of grief particularly difficult.

Working together in counselling is an evolving, negotiated, and agreed process that aims to be responsive to your changing and developing needs and wishes. You can read more about what to expect from counselling here. We also have produced an information sheet which aims to clarify the basis of our agreement to work together. It is intended to give you confidence that you know what to expect. You can download that sheet here or at the bottom of the page.

Counselling support is offered by telephone and webcam (Zoom).

Due to current restrictions, it is not possible to offer some of our services, but we would hope to resume these in due course.

‘Taking steps’ - A walking group in Inverness for people who have been bereaved.

'Living with Grief' - Counselling Support in a group. Sometimes, for some people, meeting in a group is preferable to one-to-one meetings. For more information please click here.

‘Cooking in Company’ – Support in a group for people who have experienced loss and found themselves struggling to enjoy food and cooking. For more information please click here.

Please make contact if you would like to be kept informed about any of these groups.

Support for children and young people

Have a look at the Crocus Group web pages. Crocus Group is a Highland Hospice service which offers support to bereaved children and young people across the Highlands, regardless of the cause of death of the person they have lost.

Tributes to the person you love but no longer see

Highland Hospice has on-line 'In Memoriam' book called Always in Our Hearts. It is a place to share memories and photos of those we love who have died. Whilst we may no longer see them, they nonetheless remain in our hearts. You can either flick through the book in its entirety or search for a specific person’s dedication.

For those who prefer not to be online, there is also a physical Book of Remembrance into which a loved one’s name, and a particular memory, can be entered. The books for current and past years are kept in a quiet room in the Hospice and you are welcome to look at them at any mutually convenient time.

Time to Remember

The Hospice Bereavement Support Service offers Memorial Events in Inverness and other parts of the Highlands for anyone who wishes to remember a loved one. Everyone is very welcome to attend any or all of these events and to join us for refreshments afterwards. Information about these events will be publicised on this page of the Hospice website, on Facebook, and in local press throughout the Highlands.

During the pandemic our services have been offered on-line and can be accessed via the Hospice website or Facebook pages.

Our next Time to Remember service will be 15th May 2021.

Chaplaincy

The Hospice Chaplain offers spiritual and pastoral support to people in bereavement. This support is non-denominational and is offered to people who have a specific religious faith as well as to those who would not describe themselves as ‘religious’.

The Hospice Chaplain can help with questions about funerals and can liaise with faith communities around the Highlands.

Social Work

Bereavement can raise many practical issues. The Hospice Social Work Team, can offer a wide range of advice and support.

Information and advice