For those who have lost a loved one, Valentine’s Day can be a very difficult and emotional time. It serves as a heart wrenching landmark on the long path of grief, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t meaningful ways to cherish the love that was once celebrated.
It’s important for them to remember that the love for those who have passed away doesn’t just disappear after they’re gone; it can, and should, still be celebrated, and you can be there with them each step of the way. Providing families with the opportunity for remembrance is an integral part of your aftercare program, and is a great way to build brand loyalty, express your dedication and ongoing value to them, which helps set your firm apart from others.
Here are some special ways that you can help families honor and remember their loved ones this Valentine’s Day:
1. create a memorial donation campaign.Invite families to partner with your funeral home to generate donations for their favorite nonprofit or charity in honor of their loved ones through Treasured Memories® Community Funding. Funds are collected online through a safe and secure platform that is completely *free to you and your families. Families can share why they are passionate about a particular nonprofit or cause and how it impacts their loved ones and encourage their friends and family to donate.
This Valentine’s Day, Homesteaders Life Company is collecting memorial donations for EveryStep Care & Support Services, a nonprofit health care and human services organization that annually serves tens of thousands of Iowans each year. We created our own memorial donation fund with Treasured Memories® to honor the loved ones that Homesteaders staff lost this past year. Homesteaders Life Company has made the first donation of $500 to the fund. Take a look at our fund and see how our staff have contributed to this memorial fund.
Learn more about the amazing work of EveryStep’s more than 30 programs and services in communities throughout Iowa by visiting their website.
*Standard transaction fees apply to credit and debit card transactions.
2. Spread the love in your community.
Order flowers to be delivered to each family you’ve served recently or send out sweet Valentine’s cards to your client families. Place a memory tree or wreath in your lobby and invite families to write fond memories on paper hearts that serve as decorations. Another way to share the love is to visit the residents at a local nursing home or care facility and deliver cards or sweet treats. Putting smiles on their faces is a surefire way to brighten their day and yours. Doing nice things for people is good for the soul, and it’s a wonderful way for your business to spread goodwill and get more involved in your community. If you're interested in learning more about ways to make an impact in your community, explore our Community Programs section of our free Funeral Business Resources Library.
3. encourage families to write a love letter or poem to their loved ones.
Provide nice stationary for families to put together a short poem or letter to their loved ones. Journaling is a healthy way for those grieving to express emotions – it can be funny, sad, romantic or a little bit of everything. They can even take it one step further by leaving their note at their gravesite in a nice envelope. If they’d like to save it, encourage them to store it in a nice memento box with other small things that remind them of their loved one. Or, if they’re looking for something more cathartic; they can rip it up, burn it or bury it. Gently remind them they should do whatever feels right for them in the moment.
4. let families know you're thinking of them.
If you don’t already have an active aftercare program, consider implementing small changes to stay connected with your client families. Something as simple as a quick text to let families know you’re thinking of them can go a long way and have a lasting impact. It helps for people grieving the recent loss of their loved one to know that they’re not forgotten, and that people care about how they’re doing. Texts are a more personalized and effective form of communication, and with our text-based aftercare program, it allows you to continue a nurturing relationship with your families without having to spend hours managing it.
5. host a valentine's dinner.
Provide a simple meal and invite your client families to join you. Encourage guests to share memories about their loved ones throughout the meal, give a toast in their honor, or simply designate a time for everyone to quietly reflect. For those newly widowed, it provides the opportunity to have dinner plans that are not solely focused on romance. Not only does sharing a meal with others significantly boost happiness and mental wellbeing, it also strengthens relationships and is a great way to reconnect with your client families through meaningful community outreach.
Whichever way you choose to help your client families celebrate Valentine’s Day, providing touchpoints and opportunities to honor their loved ones is an important part of an effective aftercare program and can help grow your business and generate positive reviews and referrals.
What are some ways you’ve helped families celebrate Valentine’s Day? Do you typically plan something special to honor your families’ loved ones on non-memorial type holidays?