Preplanning for Your Loved Ones: Funeral Planning
“It is wonderful that I can help nonprofit organizations raise money to meet real needs in the community,” says Sally Smith, a consultant, who works with charities throughout the Washington D.C. Metropolitan area. Her path to this career was not direct. Sally received a Master’s degree in Teaching and taught for many years. When she decided to leave teaching for other pursuits, Sally accepted a position in the development office of a local charity and found a rewarding new career, which she has pursued for almost 30 years.
Even in her free time, Sally does charitable work. “I have the privilege of sitting on the Board of Directors of a local charity that provides trained, volunteer representatives for children in cases of abuse and neglect. It does very important work and I am pleased to contribute my time and abilities to their cause.” Sally also enjoys spending time outdoors, especially in her garden.
Despite her young age, Sally and her husband recently decided to begin preplanning their funerals. Sally explains their motivation to plan ahead: “In 2004, my mother died. Going through the funeral process with my father and my siblings made me realize just how valuable pre-arrangement is. I really started thinking about it then.” She continues, “My parents had already planned everything. Thanks to their foresight the family did not have to deal with all those details. We were able to focus on being together and remembering my mother.”
Realizing that her family had made the right decision, Sally and her husband began to consider their own funeral arrangements. They turned immediately to Joseph Gawler’s Sons, Funeral Directors because of its convenient location and reputation. The Smiths began working with Thom Norris, the Vice President of Advance Planning Services. Of Thom, Sally says, “We were really aware that we were getting top quality assistance from Thom from the beginning. It was clear that his primary concern was meeting our goals, not just selling us a product.”
The Smiths reviewed the available plans, but were not completely satisfied with any of them. After telling Thom what they liked and disliked about two different plans, he was able to negotiate a plan that catered to their specific needs. “We walked away very satisfied. They made some adjustments to their standard plan to meet all of our needs, and everything was done within our price range,” Sally notes.
Now that their arrangements are made, the Smiths feel a sense of relief. Knowing that their family members will never have to face these difficult decisions is a great comfort. Sally concludes, “Making these final arrangements in advance is one of the most loving things that an individual can do for loved ones.”