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December 2014

The month of December was used to consolidate the achievements of 2014: network expansion, workshop set up, website, documentary.

It proved to be both time consuming and rewarding to search for common ground in this project (around the well known challenging issues of space, environmental damage and financial implications of burials) amongst the most relevant actors. It is interesting to observe where these actors take (co) responsibility and (co) initiative to find innovative solutions. Apart from the workshops, many conversations occur to make the ‘death’ issue part of life and reality; every time we keep on hearing new narratives around death, pressure from church/community and/or the undertaker to organize a burial in a certain way. It makes me realize again that only consumers can make a different choice.
In the mean while we are getting some useful feedback on the trailer of the documentary, to take in as we are shooting for the full feature. As this project is multi faceted, recurring encounters are necessary to re establish common ground: with SAFCEI we had an intensive open talk about mutual goals and intended efforts for 2015. With Mr Stephen Granger, responsible for big project at the City of Cape Town, I had an inspiring brainstorm.
I was fortunate to be able to travel to the Netherlands to do a presentation on the project during a Board Meeting of Yarden, one of the largest funeral companies. They were excited about the project and are open to search for collaboration efforts as they are progressing with diversity and the multi-cultural ‘farewell’ center in the Bijlmer (the most multi cultural neighborhood of Amsterdam). An intensive talk with their project manager brought great insights.
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