Give London news and stories

Geoff’s Story

“Bereavement is not like dealing with a cold. It never goes away.”

Geoff first came into contact with the Drop in Bereavement Centre in 2013 after losing two immediate family members to lung cancer. His aunt died one month before his brother. The following story is in his own words on his experience with bereavement and the Centre.

My brother died on April 27th. He was 52 years old. I've experienced loss before but never anyone as close as my brother. At first I did what a lot of people do, I kept very busy and was pleased to go to work, because everything was familiar, structured, ‘normal’.

When the busy summertime finished, it suddenly hit me like a tonne of bricks. I didn't want to do anything, just sit and do nothing. I felt as though I was going mad. Some close work colleagues told me I was not myself.

I went to the doctors locally to check for something else and the doctor I dealt with just gave me a leaflet about low mood. They didn't have any useful or up to date information concerning bereavement counselling. I eventually spoke to a bereavement group in Greenwich and through that contact I was given the number for the Drop in Bereavement Centre.

My first contact with the Centre was at the end of 2013. I attended once a week for a month or two. Over the last few years I have remained in contact with the Centre. I've taken part in a couple of fundraising activities including a six run in Olympic park and a couple of social events connected to the centre.

The simple thing to say is that bereavement has similar stages for everyone, but different levels of intensity and time. Bereavement is not like dealing with a cold, it never goes away. It just gets easier to deal with, with time. Having counselling and making connections with people who have had to deal with similar loss has been invaluable. Most importantly, I was told that I could return to get help again if I felt the need to do so. I have on two other occasions.

I only have good to say for the Drop in Bereavement Centre, without whose help I wouldn't have been able to get through my recent personal losses. It is now the end of 2016 and I'm working and feel much more 'present’ in daily life.

More news and stories

Geoff first came into contact with the Drop in Bereavement Centre in 2013 after losing two immediate family members to lung cancer within one month. Click here to read his experience of dealing with personal loss.

Baobab received their first Give London grant in early August. Click here to find out the impact of the funding.

In early August, Mazi Mas was awarded their first Give London grant. Click here to learn more.

Belong was awarded their first Give London grant in early August. Find out what the funding has gone towards here.

The Drop in Bereavement Centre were awarded their first Give London grant in early August. Click here to find out the impact this grant has made.

North London Cares and South London Cares were awarded their first Give London grants in early August. Click here to read about the impact these grants have made.

London Football Journeys was awarded their first grant in early August. Click here to find out what this funding has gone towards.

The London Community Foundation and Give London’s founding donor, residential-led developer Mount Anvil, are delighted to announce that the first grants of the initiative have been awarded. 

We are thrilled to have Mount Anvil, the leading Central London specialist residential-led developer, as our founding donor whose support has been crucial in getting Give London off the ground. Click here to read an interview with their Chief Executive, Killian Hurley. 

One charity is helping young people who’ve survived a perilous journey and arrived in London on their own, with no accompanying adult. Click here to read their story.

The centre has helped over 500 grieving people so far. Some are referred by their local doctor and others just drop in while passing. They help people cope with the problems that can follow loss – the anxiety, stress, sleep deprivation, anger, and depression. And they find the comfort of spending time with people who know what crippling grief feels like. To read their story click here.

The London Community Foundation is proud to announce the launch of its new fundraising initiative ‘GIVE LONDON’. This new fund will sit alongside its existing and well-established Donor Advised Funds and Local Area Funds. To read more click here.

The unique part of London Football Journeys is not the football, but the way the project uses video, explains Alex Baine, who founded the project in 2012, after two years working with a Mumbai project that used football to help slum kids learn life skills and find a way into education. To read the full story click here.

Belong pilot a new way of equipping young men to find a path out of gang culture and to live differently when they are released back into society. To read their full story click here.

They work with 1,600 elderly people, whom they respectfully call “neighbours”, and about the same number of young volunteers. North & South London Cares is a community network of young professionals and older neighbours hanging out with one another in a rapidly changing city. Click here to view the full story.

Mazi Mas is a social enterprise that helps women from migrant and refugee communities to develop their cooking skills and learn how to set up their own businesses. It started as a pop-up venture in 2012. Since March 2015, it has been based in the Ovalhouse theatre, just round the corner from Oval tube station. To read their story click here.

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