A new charity that provides money to help grieving parents towards the cost of a funeral for their baby or child is appealing to nursing staff to help it identify potential beneficiaries.
The Child Funeral Charity, which has just been launched, helps couples who are struggling to meet funeral costs and, subject to approval by its trustees, will pay up to £700 per application.
“With the help of professionals such as nurses, midwives and health visitors who can make referrals, CFC can step in and provide support”
From 1 October, the charity will take referrals and applications for financial support from health and social care professionals – including nurses, midwives and health visitors – who know of a family’s circumstances.
A decision will be promised in just 48 hours, with the money being paid directly to the relevant supplier.
Charity chief executive Roger Gale said: “Whether a family has lost a baby through a pre-term loss or stillbirth, the last thing they want to worry about is how to pay for the funeral.
“Although many funeral directors, clergy and celebrants don’t charge for children’s funerals, there are other expenses such as a coffin, a vehicle, flowers and service sheets for the ceremony that all add up,” he said.
“With the help of professionals such as nurses, midwives and health visitors who can make referrals, CFC can step in and provide support,” he added.
The charity confirmed to Nursing Times that it takes applications for financial help for families who have lost a child aged 16 and under, not just babies.
Mr Gale also stressed that the aim of the charity was not to replace the means-tested Funeral Payment from the government’s social fund, which helps low income families if they need assistance to pay for funeral costs.
“Our goal is to help a family in the immediate aftermath of a tragedy,” he said.
“When you have just lost a baby, you don’t want to be faced with completing pages of forms, you want to get on with making the arrangements without wondering how on earth you will pay for it all. That’s the burden we want to be able to take away,” he said.
The charity was launched on 23 July. Visit the Child Funeral Charity’s website for more information.