Specialist insurance broker Absolute Military has partnered with GriefChat to improve the support given to its bereaved clients.
The partnership will see Absolute Military customers provided with access to immediate support via GriefChat’s webchat service, while certain customers will be provided access to longer-term professional bereavement counselling if needed.
Absolute Military chairperson and GriefChat ambassador, Johnny Timpson said the partnership was “timely” as vulnerability is at a high following an increase in bereavement in recent years as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The past couple of years have been an incredibly challenging time with a significant increase in bereavement with many people experiencing the loss of more than one family member, friend, colleague or client,” Timpson said.
“This has resulted in increased vulnerability and need for both support and importantly, professional bereavement counselling. This has also been recognised by government who have established a bereavement commission,” he added.
Impact of Covid-19
The bereavement commission was established in June 2021 to explore how to better support bereaved people through and beyond the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to the commission, 2020 saw hundreds of thousands more people bereaved in the UK than in previous years.
Across England and Wales, 614,000 people died during 2020 and 2021, leaving an estimated 3mn people bereaved.
This is 75,000 more deaths than the average across the previous five years – with an estimated additional 375,000 people left bereaved.
Absolute Military announced its partnership with GriefChat in response to the publication of the commission’s ‘8 Principles for Change’ to improve experiences and outcomes for people following bereavement.
“In partnering with GriefChat in addition to our partnerships with the Turn2Us charity and MoneyHelper service, Absolute Military are proud to take a lead in the financial services sector in ensuring that our customers and their families have access to support when they need it most,” the firm’s managing director, Steve Anderson said.
He added: “Safeguarding and supporting our clients, particularly in moments and times of vulnerability is at the heart of, and central to all we both do and stand for.”
GriefChat founder and managing director, Catherine Betley said she has been impressed with the commitment Absolute Military has shown in its support of bereaved and vulnerable clients.
Betley said the additional support services offered by Absolute Military “not only offer customers a safe space to share their stories, explore the impact of grief and be offered professional support to help them cope with it, but at an organisational level also supports FCA vulnerable customer guidance”.
“We look forward to working closely with Absolute Military and enabling them to support many more bereaved people from the military family,” she added.
Betley, a former director of services at Cruse Bereavement Care, founded GriefChat in 2018.
Since then it has delivered over 80,000 therapeutic chats with professional bereavement counsellors.