WHAT IS DEATH LITERACY?
It’s the practical know-how needed to plan well for end of life. This includes knowledge, skills, and being able to take action. Getting involved in end of life care and having conversations can help build our death literacy.
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
'Death literacy' recognises the role that everyone has in end of life care and death care. Having knowledge helps us make informed decisions about the care, being able to act on that knowledge is empowering.
For example do you know:
- what an advance care plan is and how it is used?
- how to access palliative care in your area?
- about alternatives to traditional cremation/burial in your local area?
Many of us are looking to build our death literacy so we can make informed decisions about our dying, end of life care and death.
WHERE DID THE IDEA COME FROM?
Read about the research at Western Sydney University that sparked the term 'death literacy' HERE and HERE. Inspired by this research, Kerrie Noonan a founding member of the Caring at End of Life research team, cofounded The GroundSwell Project in 2010 with the goal to develop greater death literacy in the community. Over the past 6 years The GroundSwell Project has become known as a pioneering organisation working with multiple partners and organisations to deliver death education and programs that promote death literacy across Australia.
We encourage and promote collaboration in the end of life sector because this is the best way to create the systemic and long term change needed in our ageing society. Making Dying To Know Day an important date on the national health calendar.