A hundred years ago most people were born and died in their own homes. The family and community supported and took care of each other; took care of their own dying. Eventually, this practice was turned over to the local undertaker and became commercialized. Since the emergence of Hospice in the 1960’s there has been a growing trend of families providing end-of-life care for their loved ones to allow them to die at home. Home funerals are a natural extension for families choosing to care for the body of their beloved in the home after death has occurred. It’s the return to our roots, of families and communities taking charge of end of life wishes and taking care of their own beloved dead in this final act of love. The service of a Death Midwife, Death Doula, Home Funeral Guide, etc. is a heart-oriented service provided to a person when they are nearing death. Death Midwives serve as a supportive companion in the dying process and help meet the needs and wishes of the dying. It is a non-medical role; we don’t duplicate the work of professional nurses or doctors. A Death Midwife is also not a funeral director. As a Death Midwife you work alongside the nurses, doctors, and funeral directors. Death Midwives care for the family members and friends, we facilitate dialog between the dying and their family regarding their wishes for end of life and we empower families to participate in the death process of their loved one and make sure everyone’s needs are heard and met in a loving way. With compassionate hearts, plenty of hand holding, and calming voices we create a setting whether in a hospital, nursing home, or in your own home where families are able to participate in the ending of a loved one’s life.
During this intensive, skills and topics to be covered will include:
- facilitating dialog between the dying and their families so the wishes of the dying come first
- learning ways to assist with various family dynamics that arise when a loved one is dying
- the phases of death
- creating sacred space, sitting vigil and the techniques for midwifing your loved one as they die
- supporting families in the gift of caring for their love’s one’s body after death
- hands on practice to care for your family member or loved one after death at home
- helping to create a personalized and meaningful service for your loved one
- bereavement and the grief process
You will also be given the information you need to know about what a home funeral is, what they have to offer, why this may be something you’d want for yourself, and why you may be interested in providing a home funeral for your loved ones. Some of the topics to be discussed are:
- the advance planning needed for home funerals
- meeting the legal requirements
- working with the funeral industry
- finding and completing the necessary paperwork
- family direct cremation
- green burial options
By the end of this intensive you will have the information and tools necessary to prepare you to care for your family member at home after death, and to carry out a home or family-directed funeral with or without the services of a funeral director. Advanced registration is required – space is limited. Class will run from 9am – 5pm each day.
Cost for the complete two-day intensive is $150.