Write up for Online Death Cafe Liverpool (April 2020)

 Online Death Cafe

Evaluation Summary

Evaluations:  8 submitted


Attendees:  1 facilitator, 12 attendees


The weeks seem to be flying by, and here we are nearly at our next Online Death Cafe.


Our fourth Death Cafe was hosted on Zoom and our first online. It was facilitated again by Jamie Fearn and assisted by Martin Poole who runs a Death Cafe on the Wirral and Kris D'Août who has been attending the Liverpool Death Cafes regularly (thank you both for your support). There was a drop in numbers compared to our last face to face event, but we still managed to split into small group, which made discussion easier. We had a similar format to our last face to face event in Tusk, having a break part way through. It was an interesting experience to facilitate the group online, and everyone seemed to manage so well with the use of technology.


Attending the group this time was Hellen Songa a freelance journalist, interested in writing a piece about Death Cafes. There were some interesting discussions and what stands out to me still, weeks later is the impact that imagination has on our views of death.


Thank you to those who took the time to feedback (full details below) and as well as it being such a positive experience for those who fed back, it felt like what came across was that it was informative, which is interesting given that it’s a discussion group. The usual themes around it being interesting and that people felt safe also came up. One piece of feedback seemed to really highlight the purpose of Death Cafes, which is to support people to make the most of their finite lives – this is really heartening to see this fed back as impacting people in this way.


I really welcome further discussion on any or all of this, so if you have something you’d like to add or talk about, then please get in touch: jamie@jamiefearn.co.uk


The full feedback from the evaluation forms is as follows:


1.      Overall, how would you rate this event? 5 = excellent, 1 = poor:


·         7 rated it as 5

·         1 rated it as 4



·         Good session always interesting to hear other thoughts and experience

·         Safe to dive deep into a potentially difficult subject

·         Wasn't sure what to expect but found it really good to connect with a community who are willing to speak openly about death and dying

·         Despite the anxious feeling that I experienced beforehand, all was relieved when I realised that it wasn't an uncomfortable or intense conversation

·         Very useful


2.      Would you say that attending this event affected your feelings about death and / or life?


·         4 said yes

·         4 said no


If Yes, please attempt to say how:

·         Hearing one member of my groups experience of losing his father through enthanasia

·         Felt a real sadness about how much death and funerals are governed by tradition, protocol, differing views of family and relatives, trying to keep everyone happy.  I have already written a living will but has also made me think more about what sort of service I would like, where I would like to be laid to rest.  Also sadness about the current situation with COVID, some not being able to be present at death, not able to attend funerals.

·         My feelings about death has always been neutral. I think after a few more events, I will have a more polarised view

·         That I need to be less focused on what I’m working on and more on the here and now - that life is finite and this time now won’t be recaught.

·         This broadened my knowledge on how others' felt about this subject.


3.      How comfortable did you feel during the Death Cafe? 5 = very comfortable, 1 = very uncomfortable.


·         7 rated it as 5

·         1 rated it as 4


Is there anything you can think of that would have made you feel more comfortable?

·         Entirely comfortable

·         No, my discomfort was just not knowing what to expect

·         Not at this time

·         No.


4.      How well did the structure of the discussion at the Death Cafe work? 5 = very well 1 = not very well at all.

·         7 rated it as 5

·         1 rated it as 4


Suggestions for improvement:

·         No

·         I think even a few topical suggestions would be beneficial. Maybe not mandatory but just suggestive

·         No.


5.      Overall, how would rate you the facilitation of the event? 5 = excellent, 1 = poor


·         7 rated it as 5

·         1 rated it as 4


Any suggestions for improvement:

·         Ensuring everyone can hear comments/announcements

·         No.


6.      How would you rate the cake and drink? 5 = excellent, 1 = poor


·         1 rated it as 5 (!)


Any suggestions for improvement:

 ·         It would have been amazing if there has been cake

 ·         Was Online event


7.      Please choose 3 words which best describe your experience of Death Cafe:


·         Opportunity to discuss

·         Liberating, unifying, more

·         Thought-provoking,  reflective, informative

·         Interesting, fascinating, informing

·         Warm, open, honest

·         Refreshing, different, friendly

·         Open, warm, humbling.

·         Informative. Engaging and convivial.


8.      If someone told you they were thinking of attending a Death Cafe what would you say to them?


·         Come and experience, nothing to fear and opportunity to discuss what is often the elephant in the room

·         Do it!

·         Do it, if you are curious, have questions, fears about life, dying, death it is a great opportunity to speak to others who are willing to dive in to a topic that is so often taboo in our society

·         I'd absolutely tell then to give it a go

·         Do it! Intelligent conversation and friendly exchange

·         "You will be surprised."


9.      Do you have any other comments or things you think we should hear?


·         Thank you

·         No.



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