Grief affects us all in different ways. Everyone’s experience of losing a loved one is different and each journey will be unique. Grief can shake everything up – your beliefs, your personality, your sense of meaning and identity and even your sense of reality.

Bereavement is the time we spend adjusting to loss. There is no standard time limit and there is no right or wrong way to feel during the bereavement period – everyone must learn to cope in their own way. The word ‘bereavement’ comes from the ancient German for ‘seize by violence’. Sometimes when someone dies, it can feel just like that – like that person has been forcibly taken away.

Grief, although normal, can manifest in a huge range of unexpected ways. Some people get angry, some people withdraw further into themselves and some people become completely numb. Talking about the loss often allows a person to adjust to their new life with all it’s changes – Any loss has to be acknowledged for us to move forward.

Thanks to an award from the Big Lottery DAST established a project to provide support to those who have been bereaved through an asbestos-related disease. The project provides an opportunity for those affected to reach out and support each other. The project includes:

One to One Support and Advice

  • Telephone support & listening ear
  • Home visits
  • Practical advice & assistance with benefits
  • Information & advice about coroners and inquests
  • Signposting & referral to local services

Telephone Befriending Service

  • Regular telephone support from trained volunteers who themselves have experienced an asbestos related bereavement
  • A friendly voice who understands!

Coffee & Chat Support GroupsLighthouse Groups

  • Chance to meet others on their own grief journey
  • For mutual support and encouragement
  • Help ease that sense of loneliness and isolation

The Lighthouse Groups currently meet in three different areas across the East Midlands and welcome new members at any time. All of the dates for 2020 can be found here:

Lighthouse Calendar 2020

If you are interested in attending one of the group meetings or would like to find out more about them, please contact Jo Reeve at the DAST Office: 

01246 380 415

You can read some of our regular Lighthouse Newsletters here:

The most recent newsletter can be read HERE

Autumn 2019

Summer 2019

Easter 2019

February 2019

August 2018

May 2018

If you would like to be added to our mailing list to to receive regulars copies of the Lighthouse Newsletter and information about upcoming events, or if you would like more information on the bereavement support project, please contact Jo Reeve on 

Volunteer Opportunities

  • Telephone Befriender
  • Support Group Co-ordinators
  • DAST Community Champions
  • Steering Group Members

Call us for more information!

We would love you to join us at our BEACON Volunteering & Befriending Launch Event which will be a fun and engaging way to discover more about volunteering & befriending opportunities available to you in your local area with DAST. Light lunch, refreshments & a fantastic opportunity to meet and chat with like minded people
Contact the DAST office on : 01246 380415

or email: to book your place or to find out more

We believe that it is important to remember victims of mesothelioma and other asbestos related diseases and, therefore, we undertook a ‘Reflection and Celebration of Life’ projection and service in Chesterfield which was a poignant event, projecting the names of victims of asbestos related diseases to appear on the Archway at the Crooked Spire Church in Chesterfield, Derbyshire on Wednesday 27th February 2019