Your Open Forum

This open forum is for YOU. Use it to meet other NHFA members, post your home funeral stories, or ask each other questions. Enjoy!



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  • January 30, 2012 7:34 AM | Merilynne Rush
    The Board of Directors of the NHFA will be having a working retreat Feb. 3-5, with the assistance of facilitator Patty Beach, in Austin, TX.  We will be working hard on continuing to develop our organization and will keep you posted on progress.  We welcome Peg Lorenz and Lee Webster to the Board!
    -Merilynne Rush
  • December 15, 2011 8:45 AM | Anonymous
    Announcing the 2012 NHFA gathering in Chicago. See the "2012 Conference" link on the left for information and stay tuned as we add more details. We're excited to explore new ways of gathering and think the "retreat" style planned for 2012 will strengthen and build on our community.
  • December 12, 2011 11:03 AM | Anonymous
    Last night we had our December member teleconference call. About 7 people joined the discussion. We discussed some of the legal issues that Canadians are facing, and also how the organization might want to investigate offering insurance as a member benefit. 

    The 2012 NHFA Conference/Retreat was announced with information soon to come on the web page. We also discussed the different resources that were available to members on the Member Resource page (must be logged in to NHFA site to see this page). 

    A piece spearheaded by Susan Oppie of Portland was highlighted in the teleconference since this involved the national organization, Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association. Best news of all, you can listen to the previous teleconferences by visiting the Member Resource page (referenced above).
  • November 14, 2011 5:39 PM | Peg Lorenz

    HI All - My first big teleconference and my first time blogging. I'm not sure how much detail to put in this blog. Do you want to know every every caller's name and everything that was said? Yikes! I'll start with an overview and you tell me what you think. 

          We counted a total of 12 in attendance.(Two from Canada!) A wonderful beginning. Heather Massey and I as the facilitators decided to leave the agenda open to see what folks wanted to talk about.

          Three issues came up pretty clearly. First training, where it was happening and the cost. Three trainers were on the call and spoke about their offerings, Jerri Grace Lyons, Donna Belk and Char Bennett. We also included information about Nancy Poer and Beth Knox.

         Certification of home funeral guides, always a hot topic. Not a whole lot of concrete information is immediately available since the Alliance is in the process of formulating a policy. That discussion will be ongoing I'm sure.  

         The last hot topic was how do we make a living doing this work. This included one caller who has a 3 week workshop focusing on advanced planning and the Five Wishes as part of her home funeral service. Great discussion about how we feel about doing this work and the decisions we all must make to support ourselves and the potential pitfalls of going too deeply into the legal aspects of end-of-life planning. One caller directed us to a Canadian website called Speak Up which is part of an advanced planning campaign started by their government (I think).

        As we were going around with final thoughts and feedback someone said that the call was helpful on many levels but for her it had been important to be a part of a conversation that we don't get to have every day. I felt similarly.

         I wanted to remind you all of our Mentoring Program. Heather, Donna and I are offering our support and experience to anyone who wants/needs it. Please see the Member Resource page for more details. There are a bunch more things I'm supposed to remind you all of but I have to go away and refer to an email I received and then come back.

         Again, I look forward to feedback about my very first blogging experience!

     

    Peg     

     

  • November 06, 2011 6:23 PM | Anonymous
    This book, "The Party of Your Life: Get the Funeral You Want by Planning It Yourself," is a very funny, slightly irreverent guide to funeral planning. There is a nice section on home funerals and Erika Dillman (the author) spoke with Nora Cedarwood and me to make sure she represented the home funeral movement well. I enjoyed reading the book because it expanded my ideas of what could be included in a funeral, and particularly a home funeral.


  • November 06, 2011 4:54 PM | Anonymous
    Hello all NHFA members!

    We, the member resource committee cordially invite you to join us this coming Sunday November 13th 2011 in the late afternoon/early evening (depending on your time zone) for our first all member teleconference. This is one of the newest member services/resources that was announced at the conference. Representatives of the Member Resource Committee will rotate as facilitators of these monthly teleconferences. Heather Massey and Peg Lorenz will be on the initial call this week.

    Come one, come all! And bring your stories, questions, suggestions and positive energy to the meeting. Any and all topics "home funeral" are up for possible discussion. Let's start the dialogue, continue the discussion, and build our network by meeting up and sharing in real time.

    Just go to Member Resources page here on the NHFA website to find: 
    your time zone and alloted time & 
    the phone number and pin # to dial in to join the conversation

    Calls will be for just an hour.
    Hope to talk with you next Sunday!

    Heather, Donna & Peg

                         
  • October 08, 2011 2:31 PM | Merilynne Rush
    Three years ago my cousin's son was stillborn.  His partner Lisa brought the baby home to say hello and good-bye.  Her story of spending time with him is beautiful.  The comments however, reveal our culture's fear and discomfort of being with the dead.
    http://life.salon.com/2011/10/07/my_stillborn_childs_life_after_death/singleton/
  • October 03, 2011 6:29 AM | Merilynne Rush
    Dear Friends,
    What a great conference!  Thank you to all the organizers, presenters, volunteers, and attendees.  It was a great time of sharing.
    Here is another place to share.  Feel free to add a post and let us know what's on your mind.
    Sincerely,
    Merilynne Rush, Membership Chair
  • July 31, 2011 11:21 PM | Merilynne Rush
    I am looking for a recommendation.
    An acquaintance lost a son to a rare heart disorder.  He was in his early 20's.  The grief is complicated because he also had multiple other issues, including drug abuse.
    Can anyone recommend an appropriate source of comfort in the early stages of grief (books)?  I will recommend hospice and other support groups also.
    Thanks,
    Merilynne
  • July 20, 2011 12:44 PM | Cari Leversee

    The National Home Funeral Alliance conference is Sept. 21-24, 2011 in Boulder. I have attended all three conferences and love the information that is shared. But more than that I love connecting and getting to know others who are involved in home funerals across the country. Each person has a slightly different perspective to share and I always get great ideas from talking with others over lunch or between sessions.


    This year at the conference there will be a strong focus on Hospices and how home funeral guides can work within and through them. Personally, I see a home funeral as a natural extension of hospice and I volunteer for hospice in all ways that I can (visiting patients, Threshold Singing, Bath Angel, Pet Angel, 11th Hour Volunteer, etc.). I'll be doing a special breakout session at the NHFA conference on how we, as home funeral guides, can interface with local hospices and serve them … but also use that as an opportunity to get the message out about home funerals.


    Thank you,

    Donna Belk

    CrossingsCircle.org | BeyondHospice.com

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