Send more than thoughts with these care package ideas for grieving friends or family members.
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When a loved one has experienced a loss, it can be difficult to know what to do and how to support them.
If you’d like to do something more personal than giving a card or calling with condolences, a hand-picked and carefully arranged care package for a grieving friend or family member goes a long way.
A sympathy care package can be used to:
Commemorate a loss or honor a death anniversary
Cope with the difficult social and financial circumstances that death brings
Promote mental and emotional healing for the grieving
Encourage rest and comfort, when grief is draining
Process and adjust to life without the deceased
To achieve these results, this gift guide was created to suggest what to put in a care package for someone who is grieving.
How to Help a Grieving Friend
No one should feel alone during the grieving process.
It can be hard for the grieving to reach out when they are overwhelmed with sadness and conflicting emotions. So, be forward about offering your time, presence and assistance.
If they allow a visit, it is most useful to offer a listening ear but when you do get an opportunity, you can share a memory of the deceased and talk about their impact on your life. This will help your friend understand that their loved ones legacy lives on.
You can also help by providing a helping hand. Offer to help with chores, shop for groceries or care for children or pets.
Finally, giving a care packageis a practical way to show that you care and meet your friends specific needs (in a way that flowers and cards can’t).
Care Package and Gift Ideas for a Mourning Friend or Family Member
Many people will send cards and flowers and while those are nice, a DIY care package for someone who is grieving meets their everyday needs, comforts them and honors the life of their loved one.
Below, you will find care package ideas for grieving friends, family members or associates. You will also find gifts that you can give in the place of flowers and a variety of special gift baskets.
You can give a single live therapy session or unlimited therapy sessions with a Talkspace E-Card, Visit the site and then scroll down and select "Gift Cards" under "Services". The recipient will receive an e-card with your personalized message.
Friends and family can plant a Little Saps gift tree as a way to honor the essence of life with a piece of nature. These tree seedlings (which come in a variety of evergreens) are the ultimate symbols of new life. It is something that the grieving can watch grow tall and strong.
Furthermore, it comes with a gift tag that says "In memory of your loved one. Plant with love".
This jewelry box is a multifaceted gift that will easily replace (or complement) a bouquet of flowers.
Not only can it be filled with photos, messages and other reminders of their loved one, the artwork on the front can be replaced with a personal photo and it can be wound up to play "Wind Beneath My Wings".
To keep their loved ones close to home for all time, this memorial stepping stone is painted with the quote- "Perhaps They Are Not Stars In The Sky, But Rather Openings Where Our Loved Ones Shine Down To Let Us Know They Are Happy".
A book like "100 Hugs: A Little Book of Comfort" by Sandy Gingras is perfect for someone needing consolation. This book is a collection of 100 small actions, words, paintings, etc to uplift the spirit.
I would especially suggest this book as a gift for grieving children or teenagers.
Send meaningful messages about loss, grief and hope (via card or electronically).
Suggest any grief resources that are available locally or virtually. If appropriate, you can send contact information for grief counselors, local meetings and/or helpful videos or reading materials.
What should I include in a sympathy care package?
If your sympathy care package is being sent to someone grieving a loss, any of the above gift ideas are appropriate. If you are sending a sympathy care package that is not centered around a death, then your care package should be customized to the specific situation. Find inspiration by viewing these 12 themed box of sunshine ideas & How to DIY a Sunshine Box.
What should I send to the family when someone passes away?
When someone passes away, you can send their family:
Assorted Gift Baskets (which they can put out for visitors or use to take care of their family)
Contributions towards the memorial and the funeral
Flowers (if this is customary to give in their culture)
Is it appropriate to give money in a sympathy card?
Giving money is one of the most helpful gestures that you can extend after a death. From having to replace income to paying hospital and funeral costs, death and the grieving process can bring about many expenses. Giving money with a card is a way to give the family the flexibility to meet whatever needs may come up during this time. So, yes, it is appropriate.
Is it appropriate to send flowers to a funeral?
In some cultures, including North American culture, flowers are an appropriate gift to give at funerals because they represent beauty and the natural cycle of life. In other cultures, this is not so.
Do a bit of research to find out what is best in your specific case. And if you’d like to avoid flowers altogether, there are plenty of alternative gifts ideas that you can bring above.
Keep in mind that some families will make special requests “in lieu of flowers”. It is always a good idea to honor these preferences.
What can I say instead of “sorry for your loss”?
It is common to be at a loss for words when death strikes.
If you are offering your condolences in person, via telephone call or in a card, you may wish to say something a bit more personal than “sorry for your loss”.
Some thoughtful things to say are:
“You can talk to me about [the name of the deceased] whenever you’d like- both now and for years to come”.
“We won’t forget him/her”.
“She/He was so proud of you”.
“We will get through this together”.
“I would like to help you by bringing you a meal or by running some of your errands. Can you tell me a good time to come help you out”?
“It’s okay to cry. Don’t hold back. She/he was deeply loved”.