(See how we got on via our blog post: YODO event in Kings Heath Village Square , and via a short video here.)

Join us and a range of voluntary organisations, hospitals and hospices, local businesses and artists in Kings Heath Village Square from midday on Friday 22nd May and take some simple steps to make your end of life experience better – both for you and your loved ones, no matter what your age or status of health.

The event is part of the Dying Matters Awareness Week (18-24 May 2015) which has been organised by the Dying Matters Coalition to encourage people to talk openly about dying, death and bereavement. Throughout Dying Matters Awareness Week, events and activities are being held up and down the country to raise awareness about end of life issues. Birmingham has also recently become a Pathfinder project for a Dying Well Community Charter.

According to Claire Henry, Chief Executive of the Dying Matters Coalition and the National Council for Palliative Care:

“Every minute someone in England dies, but many people still feel uncomfortable talking about end of life issues. Talking about dying, death and bereavement is in everyone’s interests as it can help ensure that all of us can get the care and support we want, where we want it, at the end of our lives. Through being more confident in talking about dying and taking the five steps we are promoting during Dying Matters Awareness Week to plan for the future, we can make a big difference.”

The event in Kings Heath Village Square is intended to be an uplifting, cultural and informative opportunity to explore matters relating to dying and death.

We will have a range of stalls where you can find out about Natural Burial, ask an Undertaker, talk to solicitors about your will, find out about Funeral Plans, learn about digital autopsies

In addition we will be decorating a coffin, talking about Death Cafes, tasting funeral food and discussing funeral songs!


There will be information and volunteers on hand to chat to from Acorn’s Children’s Hospice, St Mary’s Hospice, Queen Elizabeth Hospital and the Children’s Hospital. Learn about digital autopsiesorgan donation, natural burial, and Good Funeral Guide Funeral Plans.

The wonderful Annabel from The Conjurer’s Kitchen will be on hand to let you sample some traditional funeral foods and Carole from Tuckshop Flowers will share her tips and tricks for beautiful, natural flower arrangements.

The theme of Dying Matters Awareness Week 2015 is ‘Talk, Plan, Live’, an action-focused theme emphasising that we only get once chance to have our dying wishes met, which is why it’s vital to talk, plan and make arrangements for the end of life – before it’s too late. There are five simple steps that you can take:

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



A Natural Undertaking is one of 30,000 members of the national Dying Matters Coalition, all of whom have an interest in supporting the changing knowledge, attitudes and behaviours towards dying, death and bereavement. Members include organisations from the health and care sectors, community groups, social care and housing, faith groups, the legal profession and the funeral sector.

Set up by the National Council for Palliative Care (NCPC) in 2009, the Dying Matters Coalition aims to encourage people to talk about their own end of life issues with friends, family and loved ones in order to make ‘a good death’ possible for the 500,000 people who die in England each year.

Research for Dying Matters has found that many people have specific wishes about their end of life care or what they would like to happen to them after their death, but a reluctance to discuss these issues makes it much less likely that these will be met. There is a major mismatch between people’s preferences for where they would like to die and their actual place of death: 70% of people would prefer to die at home but around half currently die in hospital.



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