Helping People Cope With Loss

A Liverpool charity which provides bereavement counselling and support to help people after losing a loved one is benefitting from support from the Steve Morgan Foundation.

Liverpool Bereavement Service, which was set up in 1998 and supports between 750 and 1000 people every year, is two years through a three-year grant from the Foundation towards the salary of Service Manager Sue Johnston.

And that has allowed the charity to continue to step up its support for people when they need it most, as explained by treasurer Christine Ross.

“Most people can, given time, accept the loss of a loved one and hold on to the memory and not the pain,” says Christine.

“However, for some the grief can be complicated such as the loss of a child, death from suicide , feelings of guilt or the trauma having to experience someone dying or getting stuck in a part of the grieving process.

“Many hold their pain rather than face it and only when something else bad happens do they realise they have not addressed it .

“By engaging with a non-judgmental trained counsellor and talking through their feelings they can reach acceptance, re-engage with their families and friends, come off anti-depressants and return to work.

“Our purpose is to support and provide bereavement counselling to people who are suffering the devastating  effects of losing another person who they loved or was important to their lives.”

There are many different ways that people may be referred to LBS, or they can self-refer, and counselling takes place in various rooms at their premises in Liverpool.

LBS also has a children and young person’s service, called Oakleaf, where young people can be seen by a counsellor either on the charity’s premises or at their school, all with a view to helping families cope with bereavement.

The role of the Service Manager is an important one, with Sue carrying out all the client assessments, and ensuring the right match between client and counsellor.

It is also a vital role as the business model of the charity means they only need to pay two staff members in their Adult Service, as they have 46 volunteer counsellors and three office volunteers.

Sue also manages the volunteers and office staff as part of her role.

“Sue is at the heart of what we do and the successful outcomes we achieve,” added Christine.

“We wish to thank the Steve Morgan Foundation for giving us three years of financial support to employ a key employee.  

“Funding for such a period gives us and Sue not only peace of mind but also a feeling of pride that the Steve Morgan Foundation recognises what we achieve.

“LBS is a true charity.

“We survive because of our workforce of volunteers who are professional counsellors. 

“We have no well-paid CEO and the business side of the charity is managed by the trustees.

“This funding has helped us employ someone who impacts on the lives of all the people we help to enable them to start feeling they can come to some form of acceptance of the loss they have suffered.”

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