Taking the stigma out of talking about death

Ian Reeves is leading a team of volunteers on the Dying Matters project for Age Concern
Ian Reeves is leading a team of volunteers on the Dying Matters project for Age Concern
Picture: Hampshire Constabulary

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TALKING about death and funerals is never easy with loved ones.

But very often families end up struggling if they have not discussed the wishes of someone who has recently died.

A new project in Gosport, run by volunteers for Age Concern is hoping to change that.

Retired management consultant, Ian Reeves, draws on his experience of advice, planning and presentation skills by helping a Big Lottery funded Dying Matters.

He is aiming to encourage people in Gosport to start conversations, to plan for their future and to ensure that their families and loved ones are aware of their wishes.

Mr Reeves said: ‘I am keen to help in this initiative as I want to put something back into the local community.

‘I believe this is a topic which we all need to address at some stage in our lives, and it’s better to do it sooner rather than too late.’

Mr Reeves is one of a small team of volunteers recruited to the Dying Matters initiative to deliver free talks on a range of sensitive and important end-of-life topics to groups and clubs across Gosport.

They are aiming to provide people with the information they need to make informed and important choices about the end of their lives.

It is hoped it will make a real difference for people who take part in the project.

‘I volunteered to be involved in Dying Matters because I wanted to help Age Concern Gosport raise awareness in the community,’ said Mr Reeves.

‘I think I can use my work skills to help start that process.’

There will be a free coffee morning at the Gosport Discovery Centre on the morning of Saturday, May 13, during Dying Matters Awareness Week.

There will also be an exhibition of books and materials to raise awareness of the benefits of will, care and funeral planning and of talking to families and loved ones about future wishes.

For information or to book a free group presentation call (023) 9260 4699 or e-mail dyingmatters@ageconcerngosport.org.uk.