Sharon Ponciano

Honoring Lifecycles


Member profile details

Membership level
NHFA Member
Member ID
First name
Last name
Honoring Lifecycles

Personal information

Your Name
Sharon Ponciano
Job title

Contact data

Telephone #
623 20th Street
Postal code

We would like to get to know you as a member. Please answer the following questions:

Please describe your experience or interest in the field of death and dying.
Thirty some years ago my 5 year old son, Jason, was diagnosed with stage 4 Non-Hodgekins Lymphoma; which launched my journey of self-education and experientiallearning in the field of death and dying.
Your story: What brought you to your interest in home funerals and your desire to be part of NHFA?
My sons and I were deeply involved in caring for my grandmother during her last months. She was a strong and independent woman prior to that. When she died just before reaching her 98th birthday, we followed her instructions left with family and the local mortuary. I did experience a sense of abruptness when the mortuary folks came to pick-up her body. We had no idea at that time about our legal rights to keep her at home a little longer.

I also have a close friend, now on dialysis, who requested a home funeral years ago. She is the the first person who brought to my attention that home funerals were still a legal possibility.
Please describe home funeral trainings or workshops you've attended (where, when, with whom).
My first training was one year ago at the NHFA pre-conference and conference workshops in Boulder. Subsequently, I received coaching from Heather Massey and Peg Lorenz for the care of a woman who died in Boulder the day after that same conference.
Assistance with my own family arrangements without hiring a funeral director for a family gathering and burial rituals with the cremated remains of my 41 year old cousin who died unexpectedly in January 2012.
Threshold training with Nancy Poer in April 2012.
What is your occupation?
Retired from Public Education as a Spanish Immersion Bi-lingual teacher in 2012.

Accepted into the American River College Funeral Service Education Program in January 2012.

Obtained my Funeral Directors License from the state of California in June 2012. I am not affiliated with a funeral establishment and most interested in developing a non-profit organization that educates and provides resources to those who choose to care for their own loved ones who have died.
What would you like to see the NHFA offer in the future? What expertise are you willing to share?
I am very grateful to the organization for the wealth of information and experience passed along in the workshops I attended last year as well as the resources offered through the website and the assistance offered individually delivered personally from experienced members. I would like to see an exploration of how the organization can best fulfill its mission statement. (It is my understanding that we are, in fact, working on this at the next conference)
I am willing to share any expertise that others find valuable and request of me.
How did you hear about the NHFA?
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