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The National Bereavement Alliance is a membership group of organisations supporting and working with bereaved people. We collaborate to provide a collective voice representing both bereaved people and families and those who provide support.

Our objectives:

  • Advocacy and Campaigning: We influence Government, the NHS, other local and national bodies and the general public to improve the lives of people who have been bereaved, including underserved and diverse communities.
  • Promoting a robust sector: We improve the quality of services by promoting clear standards so bereaved people are better served; identifying gaps in provision and working towards seamless support.
  • Championing research and evidence: We gather and disseminate evidence of the impact of bereavement and bereavement support to strengthen practice and services. This includes learning and good practice from members and supporting evidence based practice.
  • Communities of practice: We help members develop their services by strengthening their links with other organisations supporting bereaved people, exchanging information and good practice and promoting the wellbeing of those who work in the sector.

Bereavement Care Service Standards

We endorse the Bereavement Care Service Standards 2014 as a framework for service quality. All members are expected to adhere to these standards. We are not an accrediting body and do not take responsibility for the quality or delivery of members’ services. We expect members to self-audit, and share learning and good practice across the Alliance.

Our work is largely focused in England, and we collaborate closely with colleagues in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales on devolved matters affecting bereaved people and those working with them, to ensure a consistent voice for support for bereaved people across the UK.

Our history

The National Bereavement Alliance grew out of an advisory group formed by the Department of Health in 2009, to advise on bereavement care within the End of Life Care Strategy. After several years, that advisory group had fulfilled its role but there was an appetite from the organisations around the table to continue meeting, and to invite others to collaborate with them to provide an integrated voice for bereavement services.

Since 2012, the National Bereavement Alliance has provided the opportunity for bereavement organisations to meet to discuss policy and practice issues affecting bereaved people. In 2013, the Alliance consulted widely on how bereavement care could be improved, and in 2014 we published Life after Death, setting out six steps towards better support. This has formed the basis of our policy work since then.

In 2016 we were fortunate to gain two years’ funding from Macmillan Cancer Care to establish the Alliance on a more secure footing.

Read our NBA Activity report for 2019 to 2020