Social distancing and economic uncertainty due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic has made the already difficult task of planning a funeral even tougher in 2020.
The good news is, funeral directors have put in place swift measures to help grieving families still say farewell to loved ones, and also comply with the hygiene and social distancing guidelines set out by the Australian Government and Department of Health.
On top of this, if the ongoing decline of Covid-19 cases in Australia continues – even after social distancing laws are relaxed – then a return to ‘proper’ funeral services may be viable later in 2020 and beyond.
Here is everything you need to know about planning a funeral service in Sydney 2020 during these difficult times.
Impact of Covid-19 on funeral services
Under current social distancing laws funerals must be limited to no more than 10 people, and the 4 square metre rule must be observed.
Exemptions may be considered based on strong health and compassionate grounds to justify the exemption. For example, if you wish to have more than 10 people attend the service. Your funeral director may be able to submit a request on your behalf. Of course, there is no guarantee the request will be successful.
Webcasting and broadcasting live services has quickly become standard in response to social distancing limitations. Ask your funeral director to arrange a live video service to be setup based on your wishes. By doing this, close family members can attend the service in person, while distant family and friends can watch the live broadcast either: outside the venue, or in the comfort of home.
Outdoor funerals have also become viable for families in recent months. Outdoor venues offer plenty of space to comply with social distancing laws, and attendees can say farewell to loved ones in the peace and quiet of nature. Although the cold winter months ahead could make outdoor funerals a challenge. Regardless, your funeral director will be happy to recommend suitable outdoor venues in your local area.
Corporate versus family owned
There are many factors to consider when looking for a funeral director who meets your needs. One of the most crucial is deciding between a corporate or family owned and operated funeral home.
What’s the difference? Corporate funeral homes have a strong national presence in every state and territory in Australia, where each location is run by an independent franchisee and staff. Most corporate funeral homes offer the same level of packaged services no matter what the location.
Family owned funeral homes, on the other hand, tend to offer a more personalised service tailored to your particular needs, financial circumstances, and your specific local area. This is especially true for family run businesses that have been around for a while, as they have established long lasting bonds with clients, venue operators, and other service providers in their region.
As a result, family run funeral homes have the resources and networking capabilities to tailor a service to your unique requirements.
Other factors to consider when planning a funeral
Below are many other factors to help you plan a successful funeral:
- Location: Make sure the venue (i.e. chapel, cemetery, or crematorium) is within a convenient travel distance for close family and friends attending the service in person. Funerals of Compassion is a preferred partner of the CCC (Catholic Cemeteries & Crematoria), giving families’ exclusive access to local venues and other key services.
- Funeral costs: Different types of funerals have different costs. Be sure to collect multiple quotes from different funeral homes and request an itemised breakdown for each individual service.
- Qualifications and registration: Partnering with a fully qualified and registered funeral director means you are guaranteed to receive caring, compassionate service at a fair price.
- Religion and language: Choose a funeral home that is familiar with the customs and traditions of your religion. Depending on the funeral home, you may have access to staff who can communicate with non-English speaking family members in their native language.
Funerals of Compassion is a 100% Australian owned and operated funeral home with locations in Blacktown, Castle Hill, Orchard Hills, and Auburn. Our friendly and compassionate staff and funeral directors offer a personal touch with each and every service they provide, making your life easier in the most difficult times.