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Dying Matters Awareness Week 13-19 May 2013: Be Ready For It

Joe Levenson, Director of Communications for the Dying Matters Coalition, tells us about the upcoming Dying Matters Awareness Week from 13-19 May 2013 and why we should 'be ready for it.'

Although someone in Britain dies every minute, many people risk missing out on having their end of life wishes met and leaving a mess behind for those close to them because of a reluctance to talk about dying, death and bereavement and subsequently make end of life plans.  

That’s why the Dying Matters Coalition was set up by the National Council for Palliative Care in 2009. With 30,000 members, including legal firms, care homes, charities, hospices and funeral directors, Dying Matters is at the forefront of trying to change attitudes and behaviour around discussing and planning for dying.

For this year’s Dying Matters Awareness Week, which runs from 13-19 May, we want as many of you as possible to do five key things:

  • Make a will and register it
  • Record your funeral wishes
  • Plan your future care and support
  • Consider registering as an organ donor
  • Tell your loved ones your wishes

However, as new research (which Dying Matters will be publishing to coincide with the start of the awareness week) is expected to show, many of us still have not set out our end of life wishes despite the majority of people saying they are comfortable discussing death.

This failure to put plans in place means many people are not getting the type of care they would want at the end of their lives or where they would want it. We also know that the majority of people haven’t written a Will, and risk leaving difficult legal problems behind for their family.

To help people plan ahead, Dying Matters has produced a wide range of useful resources available on the website www.dyingmatters.org, ranging from short films to a series of helpful leaflets and other resources such as My Funeral Wishes. There’s also useful information to support you if you are planning any awareness week activities.

Please visit www.dyingmatters.org for more information or email info@dyingmatters.org