A child's funeral
Arranging a child’s funeral
As parents ourselves, we have made a commitment to carry out the funeral arrangements for children up to the age of 16 without making a charge. Rosedale Funeral Home is here to guide you through the funeral arrangement process and help you every step of the way. There is no right or wrong way to be feeling. Everyone is different. Try to take your time in making decisions and choices and don’t be afraid to think things through and change your mind.
Our commitment includes the following:
- To collect your child and bring them into our care at Rosedale Funeral Home.
- The professional services of a Funeral Director and any other staff required throughout, the use of the Chapel of Rest or alternative arrangements should you wish for your child to be at home with you.
- Your choice of vehicles for the funeral service which could be a hearse estate car and/or limousine.
- A traditional oak veneered coffin or, following the death of a baby or very young child, a wooden coffin covered in a material of your choice.
There are of course a wide range of other choices which you can select, and ways in which you can personalise the arrangements and these would usually be chargeable items. Funeral costs that we need to pay to other people on your behalf such as church or cemetery fees, grave digging, press announcements or floral tributes will be itemised for you and will need to be paid within 48 hours of arranging the funeral.
There are lots of ways in which you can participate in the funeral arrangements and you can be involved as much or as little as you feel comfortable with. Please don’t be afraid to ask us anything. It may be that you wish to be involved in dressing your child, carrying the coffin, back-filling the grave or designing the orders of service. It is not unusual following the loss of a baby to want to organise a photographer, and to have tiny plaster casts made of his or her hands or feet. We are here to guide and support every step of the way.
We all grieve in different ways and following the death of a child, for many it is a long, slow process that never really ends. Many people feel tearful and sad for many weeks and months after their child’s death. Grieving can feel like being on a roller coaster, up one minute and down the next – it’s hard to know what you will be feeling.
Many parents find they are helped when they give themselves time together to talk about their feelings – some find they need spiritual or grief support from a minister, the help of an experienced bereavement or relationship counsellor or draw comfort from attending bereavement groups. Please visit our contacts for details of bereaved parents who can help.
When there are other children in the family they too may feel sad and confused. Parents find that it helps their children if they can be honest and open from the start. Children sense when there is something wrong and when their parents are upset. Making time to sit quietly with them and telling them the truth in a loving, gentle way seems to help most. Even quite young children are able to ‘understand’ in their own way much more than we might expect. Children can be comforted when they feel included, when we let them into our grief and explain why we are hurting.
Suggested reading lists for families and children
Using stories and activities can be a really good way to explore issues with a child who has been bereaved. Below are lists of books, which have been found to be helpful when working with bereaved children, young people and their families.