Meeting for bereaved families

2019-01-30 06:02
Myrtle Fleming, from The Compassionate Friends organisation who will be the keynote speaker at the meeting for bereaved families.            Photo:SUPPLIED

Myrtle Fleming, from The Compassionate Friends organisation who will be the keynote speaker at the meeting for bereaved families. Photo:SUPPLIED

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THE Compassionate Friends organisation will hold a meeting for bereaved parents and family members on Tuesday, February 5, at 18:30 at the Caritas Centre (next to Newton Park Spar), in Port Elizabeth.

The gathering is aimed at giving hope and support to newly bereaved families, and also those who are further along in their grief.

Myrtle Fleming, East London chapter leader, national and international chairperson, will be the keynote speaker and hopes to encourage bereaved families to restart the meetings in Port Elizabeth.

“The death of a child is one of life’s cruellest blows. It is a devastating experience as parents should not have to bury a child.

“Sadly, some do. At the beginning, we, who have had children die, see no reason to go on living.

“In fact, we ourselves want to die. But many of us have found hope, emotional support and understanding in the Compassionate Friends, a worldwide family of bereaved parents and their families caring for each other, regardless of age, belief, cause, creed, culture or colour,” Fleming said.

The Compassionate Friends is a non-profit organisation, founded in 1968 by Rev Dr Canon Simon Stephens, who lost both parents and siblings at the age of 17 due to the actions of a drunk driver.

The organisation’s national annual gathering is to be held in East London from September 20-22, which marks their 50th anniversary.

Bereaved parents from around the country will gather to share stories, listen to talks and take part in therapeutic craftwork.

Fleming added, “In helping others, I have found healing myself. My motto now is to live because he lived. Don’t die because he died.”

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