Online Funeral Donations Are A Welcome Cultural Shift
Families have long requested that mourners donate to a charity of their loved one’s choice in lieu of flowers at a funeral and the pandemic has encouraged more uptake of online pledges, according to Helen Wathall MBE, managing director and fifth generation to run Wathall’s – Derby’s longest-established independent funeral directors.
In the past six months alone, Wathall’s, which has branches in Derby, Alvaston, Ashbourne Borrowash and Burton-on-Trent have created 309 online funeral notices at the bequest of families and processed more than £100,000 for charities and good causes through its website https://www.wathalls.co.uk/obituary-donations/
Helen Wathall explained: “Covid restrictions since March 2020 have meant that many family and friends have not been able to attend the funeral of their loved ones.
“Not only has this been incredibly distressful for everyone concerned, there was also a danger at the outset of the pandemic that the deceased’s wishes to thank a charity or organisation which meant so much to them when they were alive would not be properly recognised through donations in lieu of flowers by funeral mourners.
“Many funeral directors, including Wathall’s, had already introduced online tributes and donations in line with modern practices.
“Eighteen months on, and this online support is now widely accepted to be far easier and safer than placing a cash donation in the collection plate at the church or crematorium or sending a cheque by post.
“I feel that it has also encouraged mourners to be more generous in their support for the charity of the deceased and their family’s choice.
“I know has been greatly appreciated by organisations, especially the smaller local charities, who have all struggled to raise vital funds during these challenging times.
“Online donations are therefore here to stay and I, for one, welcome this cultural shift as it enables the invaluable support that such charities provide to people at times of greatest need to be valued and recognised.”
For more information about Wathall’s funeral arranging and free bereavement support programmes please call 01332 345268.