Military family project | Cruse Bereavement Care

0808 808 1677

The Cruse Military Family project is funded by the Libor Fund administered by the Armed Forces Covenant Fund. The project end date is the first quarter of 2021.

What do we do?

When a death occurs in the Military its effect on those left behind can be very traumatic. If the death was due to active service the circumstances could have been difficult to hear and bring media coverage.

To help those serving and their families Cruse Bereavement Care has been working with Welfare Teams from all three services to deliver Bereavement Awareness training.  

We offer a one-day course giving skills, knowledge and confidence to help Welfare Units deal with a bereavement.

How the project helps

The training we provide helps those working in the welfare area of the military to understand bereavement and how it may impact those left behind. 

This will enable Welfare Teams to offer immediate support bereaved families, and give appropriate advice and help about coping with grief and shock of that bereavement.

Project Delivery

  • The training is delivered as a one-day Bereavement Awareness course
  • Delivery is to the Welfare Team of a unit that refers itself to us.
  • Some of those who attend will already  have some knowledge in this area. The training builds on that to enhance their knowledge and give them an enhanced toolkit for working with those who have been bereaved.
  • Those who attend but have no knowledge in this area will gain confidence in how to help and communicate with bereaved people.

What have we done so far

  • The project started in September 2017 and the first training was delivered in June 2018. 
  • From June 2018 till December 2018 we delivered to 20 sites 18 in the UK 1 in Northern Ireland and 1 in Belgium to Nato HQ British Area. In total we delivered training to 300 attendees.
  • From January 2019 to December 2019 we have delivered to another 21 sites 20 in the UK and again 1 session in Belgium. We delievered training to 420 attendees. 
  • For 2020 we currently have 10 locations booked in. 9 in the UK and again 1 session for Belgium.
  • In 2020 we will be launching our e-learning module for those in the military, whether serving or veteran.

Get involved 

If you would like Cruse to deliver the Bereavement Awareness Training to your unit contact the Project Manager Gary Martin at

Immediate help following a bereavement 

If you have had a bereavement and would like to get help or advice then contact Cruse Helpline on Freephone 0808 808 1677.

Or find your local service

Project evaluation 2017-2020

Part of the project's time was allocated to allow a full evaluation to take place. This was to assess how effective the training had been. This was carried out by Sheffield University using Government approved evaluation methods.

The outcome of the evaluation showed that the training was found by the attendees as being relevant to the subject. The attendees felt the training had made them feel more confident in supporting a bereaved person. Their confidence was enhanced in speaking with others and confidence rose in their skills in dealing with a bereavement. This indicated that the training was successful in developing people’s skills. 

The training was delivered by Cruse Trainers in a one day session. From the attendees' feedback used in the evaluation it was found that the trainers were rated as being highly skilled. There were numerous positive comments about the excellent, experienced, confident, approachable and knowledgeable trainers. People appreciated the trainers’ expertise, presentation skills and how they were able to adapt the training to the needs of the group:   

“It was clear that the trainer had a vast amount of experience in loss and bereavement. The real life examples he gave amplified the training appropriately”
“Very useful and relevant and was great how the trainer tried to make it specific to what we do”
“Very pleasant and well educated on the subject. Very informative and interesting”


The training was well received by attendees. Generally, people felt the content was relevant and they improved their knowledge of bereavement and skills in supporting people. The trainers were considered exceptional. Attendees found the workshop useful. The positive feedback given about the workshop indicates it is having a positive impact on people and it would be beneficial to continue delivering the workshop to military personnel.