Launched earlier in the year, the Listening Ear South Yorkshire bereavement service has been extended until December to help people who have lost loved ones during the coronavirus pandemic.
Open to anyone who has lost loved ones during this difficult time, whether from the virus or otherwise, local health and care organisations across South Yorkshire wanted to make sure there were services available to support people whilst they may be physically distant from their families and friends.
Since launching in April, almost 500 appointments have been accessed by people from across Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield with overwhelmingly positive feedback.
People can self-refer or referrals can be made by police, GPs and primary care staff, hospital bereavement services, mortuary staff, funeral directors, coroner’s office, crematorium and bereavement services staff and community and faith organisations.
The service is a free to call on 0800 048 5224, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or via the website: www.listening-ear.co.uk/refer.
During their appointments, people will be able to talk to a trained therapist who will be able to offer emotional health and wellbeing support and practical support.
The helpline is staffed by professional mental health counsellors who will use counselling based skills, however it isn’t a counselling service. Occasionally people in crisis contact the service and they require additional support in addition to the helpline worker and should contact their GP.