The Good Grief Trust is behind the National Grief Awareness Week 2020 campaign and there will be several public building ‘light ups in yellow’ in Hereford on December 8th (nationally the light up is scheduled for 6pm but we will light our buildings up in the town centre at 4pm). All other buildings outside of the centre will light up at 6pm in line with the other ‘switch ons’ in counties throughout the country. The following public historic buildings and landmarks are due to be involved: the Butter Market, the Black & White House, the Town Hall & the Canary Bridge (linking Hampton Park Road to Rotherwas) . Other buildings may well come on board too. Churches and Nursing/Care Homes may join in as well.

This is a national event and on Tuesday 8th December at 6pm the central dome of St. Pauls’ Cathedral in London is lighting up in yellow and there will be Evening Song performance with live coverage by the BBC.

Covid-19 has meant the order of things has been turned upside-down. People can’t say goodbye in the way they would expect. There may be a ‘guilt’ element that your loved one has died alone. And then the funeral.. Many friends and relatives have had the ritual of saying goodbye taken away from them; something that is part of the normal grieving process.

When we usually talk about unresolved grief, it’s to do with things that have been left unsaid. However, this presents to us a new variant of unresolved grief; the inability to say goodbye, which may then limit grievers from becoming complete with their loss in the future.

This pandemic has robbed so many of the chance to say ‘”goodbye”, to hold the hand of a loved one, to kiss their face, to say ‘I love you’ in person. We can’t even hug outside our household /support bubble anymore. Physical contact and closeness is now measured in risk factors.

This  National Grief Awareness Week 2020 and the ‘light up in yellow’ campaign can connect us in a different type of way from normal; large meetings and the gathering of crowds are no longer permitted but this national light up and the lighting of our own own candle can bring us together. It will create a sense of community and unity too. No-one need feel alone. We are stronger together.

This national grief ‘light up in yellow’ campaign will be a very moving event that will bring our Hereford community together. We would love anyone who has experienced any form of grief throughout these last months to light a candle  at 6pm on Tuesday 8th December to feel part of this symbolic act.

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