At Heartfelt Funerals we believe that the qualities of a Great Funeral Director are:
Good listening skills
Good listening is one of those easily forgotten traits. We find that if you sit and truly listen, families want to share with you, making it easier to help them create a meaningful service. The more we listen to families’ needs and desires, the more we can offer opportunities for services tailored to each specific situation and family needs.
In this day and age, a Funeral Director is no longer just the person who is in charge of the disposition and technical details of the service; they are so much more than that. A Funeral Director should be someone who is the creative source for finding meaningful and unique ways to celebrate a loved one’s life. Gone are the days of traditional cookie cutter funerals. A Funeral Director who stands apart from others will be more than capable of putting on a celebration of a lifetime; otherwise, what value do we bring?
A great Funeral Director does not hide behind their desk. Instead, we get face to face with families in an empathetic manner, sharing stories of our own loss. Most of all, we strip ourselves of anything that is keeping us from serving every family whole heartedly. We are real, not just a man or woman in a suit.
Many in the Funeral Industry are stuck in their ways and make it easy for themselves by employing a one size fits all. It is curiosity that will cause you to think outside of your comfort zone, ask big-picture questions, and constantly improve. Without being curious there is not much room to inspire a family’s desire to farewell their loved one in a manner they deserve.
How Heartfelt Funerals Came About
I was told by a past superior not that long ago that “If you don’t like how things are done here then go and start your own business”. That is where I am right now. Thank you to that person for giving me that drive to do it myself, my way, where families will always come first. I pledge to those families my support will be truly heartfelt.
My Story Maree CARL – Funeral Director/Owner
When I was 16, my Grandfather died at the age of 59 of lung cancer. A strong hard working Dairy Farmer, on the west coast of the north island of New Zealand. I remember visiting him in hospital, he was so weak and frail. Sitting in front of him was a tub of unopened yoghurt and a spoon. I asked him if he was hungry, which he was, but too weak to even raise his hand to feed himself. After leaving him that day I remember the anger I felt towards the nursing staff who clearly did not recognise or care that this beautiful man needed their help. At that moment I decided I was going to be a nurse and make sure that never happened to patients in my care. Sadly my Grandfather passed away at home a short time later. I did become a nurse and when I graduated I travelled to Australia for a 12 month working holiday that has now extended to 32 years.
I got a job nursing in Beenleigh. At the time the closest hospital was QEII. The Ambulance would swing by the medical centre and pick up a doctor and nurse as a Medivac team. This gave me a taste of the adrenaline rush of a Paramedic which quickly turned to my next ambition. I was promptly told they did not employ females. This only made me more determined to push the boundaries and prove to them I would not only be a great Officer but a great addition to their team. The guidance and lifetime friendships that were forged have been a big part of creating the person I am today. It was the best job in the world, until having children. That has been and always will be my greatest achievement in life. I worked off and on over a number of years on the Sunshine Coast, but the pull to be a full time mum saw me walk away from the Service when my last child was born in 2002.
In 2009 when visiting family in New Zealand my 17 year old Niece died of Meningococcal C. The care given to her and the time they allowed and encouraged us to spend with her at home over a number of days was invaluable to the family and her school friends. It gave us time to feel every emotion possible around her loss. By the time the Funeral Director arrived to take her to her service and burial, everyone was in a place of peace and acceptance. It was still extremely sad and heart breaking, but felt as if everything that had to be said was said. A few years later my Dad passed away at the age of 71. Once again, I returned to New Zealand where the Funeral company was all too willing to allow us to send Dad off in the way he would have wanted, with his gumboots on, in the back of my brother’s old rusty farm ute. On returning to Australia, I had the urge to pursue a career in the funeral industry. I have since worked for two large Funeral companies. The satisfaction of being able to assist families through such a sad and emotional time in their lives and make it all a little easier has been extremely rewarding.
Unfortunately it didn’t take me long to realise the industry is very old and tired. I was told. “Your morals, work standards and expectations of others are too high”. This made me question my own worth in the industry until now, where I can do it my way and yours.
I would be honoured to assist you in fulfilling any wishes you have to make your loved ones care and service as respectful, memorable and deserving as it should be; ensuring that families come first.