A non-profit institution dedicated to education and research for the funeral service profession.
Operating as usual
The long-lasting repercussions of COVID-19 are only just now being fully understood as data from the last two years becomes more widely accessible. Check out the findings discussed in NFDA's 2022 Cremation and Burial Report to learn more:
Data Shows COVID-19 Impact on Funeral Service is Significant | Connecting Directors NFDA 2022 Cremation and Burial Report Shows Nearly Half of Members Now Offer Online Cremation Burial Arrangements with the Cremation Rate Across the Nation Expected to Exceed 50% by 2035.
Funeral directors come with all kinds of interests and backgrounds. What makes them so interesting is the diverse backgrounds, cultures, and interests that are found among them. Hear the stories of three very different funeral directors: https://fal.cn/3rX7R
Sudden, traumatic, and unexpected deaths affect not only the family of the deceased, but often create unique challenges for funeral homes: https://fal.cn/3rPky
The internet has made information on death and preparation more widely available, causing a shift in the overall attitude. With millennials leading the change, the "death positive generation" is rebranding passing on:
Millennials are the ‘death positive’ generation and it’s time to follow their lead - AZ Big Media With millennials leading the change, being coined the “death positive generation”, even AI technologies are trying to rebrand passing over.
From keepsake visitor boxes to virtual visits and QR code maps, here are some of the ways that the funeral industry is creating unique experiences at the graveside: https://fal.cn/3rEjE
The stark reality of the pandemic has forced many Americans to assess their end-of-life plans, consider alternative burial options, and plan ahead to help lighten the burden on grieving loved ones: https://fal.cn/3rzeD
When it comes to end-of-life planning, cost is a top consideration and source of concern 69% of those surveyed said they would change their burial plans if money wasn’t a factor.
A Dutch startup wants to rebuild the world with ecological structures made of fungal mycelium. Its proof of concept? Living coffins: https://fal.cn/3rsMu
Your Final Resting Place Could Be a Coffin Made of Mushrooms Loop wants to rebuild the world with ecological structures made of fungal mycelium. Its proof of concept? Living coffins.
A new sustainable option for what to do with our remains is trickling into popular consciousness. Read more to learn about the practice of aquamation, it's invention, and the rising adoption: https://fal.cn/3rnH5
Could Water Cremation Become the New American Way of Death? A sustainable option for what to do with our remains is trickling into popular consciousness
Data shows that the needs of funeral consumers are changing, so it’s clear that Celebrant services have value in every funeral home doing business today: https://fal.cn/3rhvq
A recent study projected cremations to continue rising, from 1.56 million in 2019 to just under 3 million in 2040, which would represent 78.4% of all U.S. deaths that year: https://fal.cn/3raYz
Here’s why cremation is now chosen after 57% of all U.S. deaths The ongoing surge in U.S. cremation rates can accurately be described as “stunning,” author and grief educator Harold Ivan Smith said. [caption id=
From "death positivity" to personalized memorials, here are some of the ways that Millennials are expected to shake up the deathcare industry in the coming years: https://fal.cn/3r999
Given that an increasing number of people are interested in living a more sustainable, environmentally friendly lifestyle, it’s not surprising that desire would carry through to the very end: in death: https://fal.cn/3qDh4
What is human composting? Experts explain how the eco-friendly burial option works. Human composting, which turns remains into soil, is an eco-friendly alternative to traditional burial and cremation. Here’s how it works.
New generations of artisans are keeping traditional rituals alive, protecting old ways of honoring the dead in ways and reflecting the culture in its current forms: https://fal.cn/3qxHb
Death Care Artisans: Centuries of Intergenerational Craftsmanship | Connecting Directors New generations of artisans are keeping traditional rituals alive, protecting old ways of honoring the dead in ways and reflecting the culture in its current forms.
The deathcare space has in recent times demonstrated increasingly-speedier advancements in the field. Technology primarily sets the standard and the pace, but there’s also startling, unguessed-at progress along novel, unexpected avenues: https://fal.cn/3qs2E
The Future of Deathcare Architecture | Connecting Directors Necessity is the mother of invention, and the needs of the future of deathcare have been making known for some time one of the more compelling areas of urgency in need of creative solutions: real estate.
In the spirit of discovery, here’s a little profile of four of the most unique roles to be filled in the field of death care from around the world, current and historical: https://fal.cn/3qmd3
4 Odd International Deathcare Roles | Connecting Directors In the spirit of discovering the strange and twisted, here are four of the most unique roles in the field of death care from around the world.
In an effort to muster up interest in his deathcare startup, Justin Crowe of Santa Fe, New Mexico, found himself carrying a box of solidified human remains while doing the rounds at funeral industry conferences: https://fal.cn/3qgW6
Meet the 30-year-old startup founder turning cremated ashes into decorative 'stones' for more tangible grieving Justin Crowe said ashes can be a persistent form of guilt and frustration for loved ones. For $595, his company will turn them into "parting stones."
The experience of witnessing the grief of others takes a toll of its own in regular, everyday life but when such exposure is an integral element of one’s profession, effects can accumulate. There’s little to prepare anyone for direct experience of a child’s funeral, even when it’s your responsibility to see to the child’s final needs.
Laying a Child to Rest | Connecting Directors When a child dies at any age for any reason it’s a tragedy; illness, trauma, whatever the cause, such loss is incomprehensible for the family.
Prior to the Civil War, most Americans chose to have their funeral services performed at home, but the uprecedented death toll played a major role in the emergence of the funeral industry. What lessons can we learn from the events in our history that may influence how we serve our communities today?
The US Civil War drastically reshaped how Americans deal with death – will the pandemic? The Civil War – the second-most-deadly event in US history, just behind COVID-19 –contributed to lasting changes in how Americans care for the dead.
Which is the “greener” burial method: Natural Forest Burial or Natural Organic Reduction? What are the commonalities and differences?
How Green Can You Go? Natural Forest Burial vs. Natural Organic Reduction | Connecting Directors Which is the "greener" burial method: Natural Forest Burial or Natural Organic Reduction? What are the commonalities and differences?
The archaeologists that recently uncovered partially cremated remains in this 2,300-year-old Istanbul tomb said that they have never before seen this type of a cremation tomb from the Hellenistic period. What can the burial traditions of our ancestors teach us about the civilizations that came before us? https://fal.cn/3pakY
Rare 2,300-year-old tomb in Istanbul holds partially cremated body The tomb also held a terracotta goblet and a perfume bottle.
When examining the question of how long it actually takes for a body to fully decompose, the answer is never as clear-cut as one might expect. Here are a few factors to consider: https://fal.cn/3p4zR
Dust to Dust: Deconstructing Decomposition | Connecting Directors How long does it take a decomposing body to return fully to the earth? A body is buried in dirt: how long before it becomes a skeleton?
Over the past several years, the funeral industry has seen a significant boom in both the services that offer eco-friendly options and customer's demand for them: https://fal.cn/3oYwH
Crowdfunding isn’t a new concept for deathcare professionals, but crowdfunding for a new funeral home itself? Meet the first ever crowdfunded funeral home: https://fal.cn/3oWny
Return Home: First Crowdfunded Funeral Home Envisions the Future of Deathcare | Connecting Directors Crowdfunding to fund a funeral home? That’s a new idea. A brilliant one, if the success of Return Home in Washington is any indication.
This weekend, join us for our virtual and in-person open house! Our Open House events are a wonderful opportunity to find out more about what our program has to offer. Visit our website to learn more!
With so many options and customizations on the market today, it's easy to forget that burial was once the only option available. Here is a brief history of the practice and its logistical necessity in the U.S.: https://fal.cn/3os0d
A Brief History of Burial in the United States | Connecting Directors Today, when families select their loved one’s format of final disposition from a menu of eco-friendly alternatives, it’s easy to forget that once upon a time burial was the only option available in this business.
Cremation has seen an incredibly surge of popularity in recent years, making it twice as common as it was two decades ago. What does this seismic shift say about the future of deathcare? https://fal.cn/3omhS
The stunning rise of cremation reveals America’s changing idea of death Cremation is now more popular in the United States than a traditional casket burial, and twice as common as it was two decades ago. What does that say about us?
There are many options for green burials available, with the number increasing all the time. As often called upon advisors for our communities, it's important to understand each option and what may be best for our clients. https://fal.cn/3obLk
Which Disposition is the "Eco-Friendliest?" | Connecting Directors In this article, we review the top 9 eco-friendliest, or greenest, disposition options (in no particular order!).
The scattering of ashes or their incorporation into memorials has long been a tradition people turn to at the end of their lives, but full-body burials at sea are not something you see every day due to their more complicated legal protocols: https://fal.cn/3nU3r
Yes, anybody can be buried at sea. Why people pick the ocean as their final resting place Southern California boat captains say they have never been busier burying people at sea.
A world of services has appeared to help act as digital death doulas for the bereaved. They show software's potential—and its limits: https://fal.cn/3nP0a
Funeral professionals are often the first point of contact for families experiencing grief. Taking a little time to learn more about how funeral service and grief work align, where these professions overlap, and how to support grieving families best, will benefit each and every funeral professional: https://fal.cn/3nNX5
Funeral Service and Grief Work- How to Support Grieving Families Learning more about where funeral service and grief work align will benefit each and every funeral professional.
Human composting as an eco-friendly funeral option has raised a lot of interest from the general public recently. Listen to the founder and CEO of Recompose tell her perspective on the practice: https://fal.cn/3nDFA
Katrina Spade: Could our bodies help new life grow after we die? We compost plants and livestock, so why not humans? Katrina Spade says that if you want to help the planet one last time, consider composting your body.
It sometimes feels like there is a new trend in eco-friendly burial every week, but how does that translate to actual adoption? Check out one funeral expert's take on how this trend is playing out: https://fal.cn/3nxrG
The way we choose to honor those that we've lost is often a unique journey for each person. For many, channeling your grief and love into art can be a healing process. Here are a few unique ways that artists are using cremated remains within their art: https://fal.cn/3nsj0
Popular culture is a powerful force for change, which begs the question: how could it be influencing the end-of-life decisions we make? Hear one funeral expert's take on what might be shifting behind the scenes: https://fal.cn/3nnUf
The ways we honor our dead impacts the world just as much as the way we live. From tree pods and mushroom suits to plain old dirt, death may have a greener future. https://fal.cn/3n8TC
Green burial is a growing trend. Could it become the norm? From tree pods and mushroom suits to plain old dirt, death may have a greener future.
"Thinking outside the box" takes on a new meaning with some of the funeral industry's most recent innovations, especially when it comes to practices like Aquamation. Hear more about the process from a whole new engineering perspective: https://fal.cn/3n3t9
You Can Be Decomposed in Water Instead of Being Buried or Cremated Aquamation is an eco-friendly method of water cremation that decomposes your body's remains through alkaline hydrolysis after you die.
Although death is an unavoidable fact of life, the processes behind funeral arrangements and body preparation aren't common knowledge. Here is how you can be an educational thought leader in your community to demystify deathcare: https://fal.cn/3mZ93
5 Easy & Effective Ways to Educate Your Community on What You Do | Connecting Directors Here are 5 ways you can talk about deathcare and firmly establish yourself as your community’s thought leader on all things death-related.
The way deathcare companies do business has changed forever over the last few years, and probably for the better. As new advancements help bring the profession into the 21st century, it may be time to rethink the way we build a strong company identity. https://fal.cn/3mRSI
The Value of a Strong Company Identity in Funeral Service In today’s workplace landscape it’s important for funeral businesses to learn the value of building a strong company identity in the deathcare space.
Funeral directors fill an extraordinary role by helping us navigate life beyond the death of a loved one, but grief is often messy and uncontrollable. What do you do when someone's grieving process goes beyond what should be reasonably expected? https://fal.cn/3mLCv
The Assault of Grief | Connecting Directors Handling grief is a major feature of the profession, and grief management is part of the training, but what kind of grieving goes beyond what should be reasonably expected?
Maybe you’ve heard the term “death positive” recently, but what exactly is it and what can we learn as funeral professionals from this new movement? https://fal.cn/3mG2k
High efficiency is often seen as a positive attribute when it comes to providing a much-needed service. However, according to some professionals in the field, slowing down the death planning process for families has had some unprecedented benefits. https://fal.cn/3mBuh
The Unexpected Value of Slowing Down Death Planning According to some professionals in the field, slowing down the death planning process for grieving families has had some unprecedented benefits.
A small stretch of an ancient cemetery in Naples is set to open to the public for the first time, shedding new light on the burial practices of the cultures that have come before us. https://fal.cn/3muSI
A Long-Overlooked Necropolis in Naples Reveals the Enduring Influence of Ancient Greece The Ipogeo dei Cristallini's well-preserved tombs will open to the public as soon as summer 2022
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