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Annual Report for Cuppa & Company Petersfield 2013

Cuppa and Company has been running now for nearly two years. We meet from 2:30 - 4:00 pm on the first Tuesday of every month at the URC church in Petersfield. The URC allow us to use the building free of charge, which is very much appreciated.

The group is run for the benefit of the bereaved who have been referred, usually by word of mouth, including local clergy, G.P's, funeral directors, other professionals who may have been involved and others who come along. It is run by members from Life church and Steep and Froxfield church, some of whom have themselves been bereaved.

It takes the form of an 'afternoon tea' with linen tablecloths, flowers, china cups and saucers and a selection of homemade cakes. We want the people who come feel as though they are really cared for and we think these little touches can help with that.

We have an average of between 12 and 15 people at each gathering. Some come for only two or three months, others have been coming since the start and really look forward to it. Most are elderly, although not all. For some it is the first 'social' event they will have attended without their partner and is a real stepping stone to being more confident about being able to cope alone in social situations. They realise that most of the other people will also have experienced a loss and that provides some reasssurance for them, that they are not alone and gives them 'permission' to speak about their experiences if they want to.

We had a letter from a GP about a patient she referred to us, thanking us for holding the group and saying that she had seen much less of her patient in the surgery since she started coming to Cuppa and Company.

I think all of us who are involved with it count it a real privilege to serve the community in this way.

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