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Top 30 Ways to Help After a Death

Immediate Ways to Help After a Death

Start a meal train.

Get kids to and from wherever they need to be.

Make sure they have basic food items – milk, bread, eggs, etc.

Help with housework.

Help gather and print photos if they are doing a photo board.

Take the kids somewhere so the parent has a little alone time.

Be a prayer warrior for them.

Give a gift card to a restaurant for quick meals.

Stop over and offer a hug.

Talk about the deceased with the kids and share how he/she would have felt about whatever you’re doing.

Bring paper and plastic goods (plates, toilet paper, paper towels, etc.). No one wants to do dishes after meals and the less prep/clean-up the better.

Bring shampoo, laundry soap, and other necessities so they don’t have to run to the store for them.

Help with yard work.

Offer to collect stories about the deceased from friends and colleagues and put them together in a book for the family.

Suggest they keep clothing for a while if they have any desire to have quilts or pillows made from them.

Offer to help with tasks in several months.  The same tasks that you are offering to help with now will be appreciated several months later when everyone has “left.”

Help with yard work.

Talk about the person that has died.  Use his/her name.  You won’t make their loved ones sad by talking about the deceased.  They will be thinking of the person and happy someone else is as well.

 

Ways to Help in the Coming Months and Weeks

Make reminders to call/visit on special days (birthdays, holidays, anniversaries).

Take a meal several weeks after the death.

Stop over and offer a hug.

Check on them after everyone has left.

Talk about the deceased with the kids and share how he/she would have felt about whatever you’re doing.

Invite them over for a meal after several weeks or months.

Invite them over for the holidays, if you are able to do so.

Send “I’m thinking of you” gifts later on – grocery card, Starbucks card, etc.

Ask them how they are doing several months later and be prepared to spend time listening to the real answer.

Suggest they keep clothing for a while if they have any desire to have quilts or pillows made from them.

Offer to collect stories about the deceased from friends and colleagues and put them together in a book for the family.

Be a prayer warrior for them.

Offer to help with tasks in several months. The same tasks that you are offering to help with now will be appreciated several months later when everyone has “left.”

Help with yard work.

Talk about the person that has died. Use his/her name. You won’t make them sad by talking about the deceased. They will be thinking of the person and will be happy someone else is thinking about them as well.

I hope this gives you some ideas for helping someone through the death of a loved one.  If you would like other suggestions check out,  A Collection of Sympathy Messages and Condolence Quotes, A Guide for Writing a Sympathy Note, and sign up for our email list to receive a free comprehensive resource guide for the bereaved. 

Top 30 Ways to Help After a Death

Loving Through Loss: Resources for Grief Support

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