According to a new study by the Funeral and Memorial Information Council (FAMIC), the percentage of adults age 40 and older who see value in a funeral has dropped 13% over the past five years – down from 95% in 2010 to 82% in 2015. And the percentage who felt funerals were instrumental to healthy healing after a loss went from 87% in 2010 to 72% in 2015 – a drop of 15%.
While a majority of people still say funeral and memorial services are valuable, the downward trend is worrisome to the funeral industry.
At the first general session of the 2015 National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA) convention in Indianapolis, IN, Christine Pepper, the organization’s CEO, announced a new program to help funeral directors convey the value of a funeral and build trust with the families they serve.
The NFDA’s Arrangement Conference Training Program will give funeral directors the tools to provide better customer service and information, convey opportunities for memorialization, and address the challenges and opportunities cremation poses.
The substance and agenda of the training will address concerns raised by the NFDA membership. The program’s content is currently in a rough outline. The training program will be rolled out to the membership during summer state FDA meetings in 2016.
NFDA encourages all funeral homes to embrace FAMIC’s Have the Talk of a Lifetime campaign, which helps families start talking about meaningful events in each person’s lifetime. Ideally, the elders convey their life stories to younger family members. Having had such conversations makes the funeral director’s job a lot easier when it comes to conveying precious details about each person’s life.
FAMIC is a membership organization comprising organizations in nearly all areas of the death care industry. FAMIC is committed to making available to the public direct and open information regarding death care and memorialization from the leading associations of service providers and businesses.
NFDA is the world’s leading and largest funeral service association, serving 19,700 members who represent more than 10,000 funeral homes in the United States and 39 countries around the world.