Planning A Socially Conscientious Funeral: Tips And Ideas

If you pride yourself on being socially conscious, you can bring that quality into your funeral planning. Whether you are planning your own funeral through a pre-need or planning the funeral of a loved one, there are ways to make the event resonate with socially responsibility. Here are some ideas to consider:

1. Explore the idea of a green funeral

Part of being socially conscious involves being environmentally conscious. Unfortunately, embalming uses chemicals that are not ideal for the environment, and cremation can release greenhouse gasses.

Fortunately, there are environmentally-friendly alternatives to these practices. For example, you can forgo embalming -- Instead of preserving the body, plan to schedule the funeral very close to the day of the death. You can also opt for a green burial where your body is wrapped in a simple shroud so it can quickly and naturally go back into the earth.

2. Ask for donations rather than flowers

While many people find flowers to be a soothing way to honor the dead, others find them to be a waste of money. If you are trying to plan a socially conscious funeral, ask for donations to a special non-profit or charity group rather than flowers.

3. Elicit the assistance of the funeral director

The funeral director you hire can also help to arrange charitable donations or other socially conscientious opportunities at the funeral. For example, many funeral directors are willing to collect donated items, ranging from canned food to old winter coats, at a funeral, and then, they arrange for these items to be taken to the appropriate charity. Having the funeral director handle this aspect of the service relieves the mourners from that burden.

4. Include socially conscious readings

Instead of choosing readings that simply try to soothe the mourners at the funeral, consider filling the service with readings that have a socially conscious bent. That could be readings by poets and essayists, beloved by you or the deceased person.

Additionally, if you are writing a eulogy for a socially conscious friend, focus on his or her successes in a way that inspires the other people at the funeral to become more socially conscious. While funerals are a place for mourning, they can, in the right circumstances, be a place for inspiration.

5. Pay attention to the food

Finally, when planning a funeral for a socially conscious person, think carefully about the food that is served after the funeral. Is the coffee fair trade? Are the servers or caterers paid a fair wage? Is the food farmed or raised in responsible conditions?

Ideally, you should craft a post-funeral menu that aligns with your social beliefs or the beliefs of the person who has died, and those questions are just a few of the ones you should consider. For more information, contact Hitzeman Funeral Home, Ltd. or a similar location.