19th Death Café Hampstead write up, 2 Feb. 2014
26 booked to attend (4 arrived without booking)
25 attended: 5 men and 20 women(including 5 female facilitators)
25 feedback forms returned: 20 Women, 5 Men (including 5 female facilitators)
Average age: 54
Average age for Men: 51 (aged 28-83)
Average age for Women: 55 (aged 34 – 78)
Overall, how would you rate this event?(10 = excellent, 1 = poor) 8,7/10
People's experiences of this Death Café:
I had a great experience. We had warm and deep conversations and it just flowed easily. It was exhilarating to talk about death and I felt closer to my group after. I think its important to talk about death when you don’t need to. Filmmaker, female 48.
Really enjoyed the evening. Very insightful. Therapist, male, 60.
Wonderful experience, conforming the beautiful uniqueness of human beings in the face of this one true certainty that unites us all. Lovely to listen to all the stories and experiences of others and the things they think and feel about death. I think it is important, necessary in fact, to talk about death to keep things in perspective and live a good, healthy, present existence. Landscape architect, female, 34.
Informative, expansive, learned a lot, terrific variety of people and experiences. I felt connected to humanity. Life coach, female, 71.
I found it very good. There was real rapport between us at our table and we were able to share feelings, thoughts, experiences and felt heard. I felt able to speak honestly about concerns. I found it difficult to hear everyone at the end when we were gathered in a circle, but that is because I am hard of hearing so the noisy fan was very distracting. Composer, female, 78.
A very safe environment with stimulating and thought provoking conversation. I have met some extremely interesting people. A privilege to be able to listen to their experiences and thoughts on a subject that is often not discussed. Socialworker, female, 56.
Great evening discussing various topics around death and the dying experience. All members of the group were very open and willing to share. A safe place. Children’s Centre manager, female, 59.
Amazing evening. So many topics covered, very interesting. An honour to hear everyone’s experiences and thoughts. Teacher, female, 61.
Very interesting. Wonderful to share and learn. Happy with evey aspect of the evening. Teacher, female, 61.
Lovely to share and invoke connections. Maybe a bit ponderous at times. Social worker, female, 60.
Welcoming. Inclusive. Stimulating. Fun. Personal assistant, female, 56.
Satisfying. The group at the table jelled well. And the whole group did feel like a community. Retired nurse/end-of-life doula, female, 62.
I was amazed how comfortable I felt talking about death. It's a subject I am not used to talking about at any level previously. I have recently volunteered at a hospice and the subject is now one I need to explore more about. I came out of curiousity and the need to understand death and its impact on me to date. Operations manager, female, 45.
Possibly more integration to get a wider experience. Script supervisor, female, 37.
Very interesting. Engineer, male, 83.
This is my third Death Café. I have enjoyed all three experiences because they have all been unique and enlightening. I am curious and attracted to this topic. Lecturer/aromatherapist, female, 38.
Very interesting to hear a mutliplicity of viewpoints. An excellent form of social bonding to talk about a topic we will all have direct experience of, both as bereaved and deceased, where nobody is right or wrong. The process is what is important. Generally non-judgemental, but the positive aspects of cremation where dismissed too readily without thought. Would be interesting to have a more detailed discussion so that plenary session felt more inclusive. Charity manager, male, 48.
Very interesting – a good rapport between participants with quite divergent views at the table where I sat. We had a lengthy discussion about the nature of consciousness. It is good to step out of the mundane. I came out of curiousity, I love Death Café. Psychologist, female, 56.
Inspiring, interesting discussion. I was in a good group. Maybe its intended, but since we were talking serious subjects it could have been better if we did not eat as we talked. I had not been to a Death Café before. Professor of Computer Science, male, 36.
The group shared very openly. An interesting evening. Different beliefs, ideas and experiences. All participants were curious about dying and dying matters. The conversations flowed nicely. There was closeness and a sense of intimacy, nobody dominated. People listened to each other and showed real respect. Acceptance of differences was also shown. Psychotherapist, female, 58.
I came expecting to hear a lot of different views, however I was still very surprised at some of the thoughts people had. I also appreciate that it is a subject that (to me and my perception) is deeply rooted in feeling and emotions. However, I would like to explore discussions more objectively through reasoning and science. I had anxiety and since confronting it in my work it has been subdued somewhat. And so going back to talking about more richly would help my anxiety (and work). Designer, male, 28.
Wonderful space to exlore in a safe non-judgemental way a subject not always easy to face. I wish to help people who want to talk about death, their fears, desires, etc. Counsellor, female, 70.
Moving. One man shared his ideal death of stabbing being painfree which comforted mother of son who was stabbed to death. Reassurance and support, atmosphere of sharing and generaosity around the table. All spoke and were themselves. Shared different experiences of end-of-life and control of dying. Academic, female, 43.
Fascinating mix of people, attitudes and opinions. Round my table, a scientis, hospice worker and a lady with a cancer diagnosis. Great conversation about the nature of consciousness, whether it continuous, what continuous. Love the openness of people and willingness to engage in such a real way. Always feel that the event could be slightly longer. Designer, female, 56.
A rich evening with a wide ranging discussion I did not want to end. Neither did the others at my table or the other tables, so we pretty much talked without stopping until coming together at the plenary. Psychotherapist, female, 63.
What motivated you to attend this evening?
1 x I have a life-limiting illness
5 x I have been bereaved
9 x I want to prepare for my own death (and for parents death)
15 x I wish to learn about end of life issues
Religious/spiritual orientation in childhood and now:
· Catholic as a child/not now
· Jewish as a child/not now
· 2 x Ex-catholic/spiritual Buddhist leanings
· No idea
· Atheist/now Deist
· Seeker born into an atheist family/now I am merely curious
Have you attended a Death Café before? If so, how many?
6 x came for the first time
4 x came for the second time
4 x came for the third time
5 x fourth time or more
Do you, or are you planning to host a Death Café?
1x I want to host a Death Café in Japan
2 x I want to host a Death Café in a London hospice
1 x I want to host a Death Café, possibly
hospice aide/ artist/ CNA
is it structured like meeting friends at a cafe for conversation and perhaps food and drink ? are these organized to the extent that people pay to join the experience? who are the facilitators?
Posted by Paula Hendricks
@ Paula Hendricks
Please see the listing for this Death Cafe for some of these details: http://deathcafe.com/deathcafe/1516/
This Death Cafe is in accordance with our guide here: http://deathcafe.com/how/
All the best,
Posted by Jon Underwood