New bereavement service in Newham

A new volunteer befriending service for those who have experienced the death of a friend or relative will be launched in Newham.

It will offer anyone over 18 who lives in or is registered with a GP in the borough and has been bereaved, the chance to see trained befrienders to provide emotional support as well as useful information.

St Joseph’s Hospice, Newham Psychological Services, and City and East London Bereavement Service have come together to provide the service which they believe will provide much needed support for people at a vulnerable time in their lives.

For people who would prefer to meet in a group setting, sessions will be held at various venues in the borough.

Lourdes Colclough, community development manager at St Joseph’s, said: “Losing a family member or friend is one of the most difficult events anyone has to cope with. This initiative will set up a network of volunteers to support their community during these times and allow those who might not access professionally led services to get the support they need.”

The service will also provide a terrific opportunity for volunteers. Anyone with good communication skills who can commit to a minimum of eight hours a month can apply to be befriender. Successful applicants will receive full training, a reference after three months, as well as the fulfilment gained by helping neighbours rebuild their lives. Training begins in August.

For more information contact Lourdes Colclough on 020 7540 0277 or 07506927647 or email Lourdes at