Learn How To 'green Your Grave' At Centennial Park

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25th October 2009, 07:00am - Views: 1731
Learn How to 'Green Your Grave'

What does "green to the grave" really mean?

South Australians can find out when the State's largest cemetery holds a funeral industry open day today (Sunday 25 October).

Biodegradable coffins and memorial urns, carbon offset schemes, recycling options and environmental revegetation programs will be on display from 10am to 4pm at Centennial Park.

Visitors can learn how to reduce the environmental impact of their final resting places and determine whether burial or cremation is the best option for them.

"Many people like the idea of going green to the grave but don't really know how this is best achieved," Centennial Park's CEO, Mr Bryan Elliott, said.

"The terms `natural' and `bushland' burial mean different things to different people. In fact, many people assume they are same thing but there are some differences.

"There are also other environmental options available to South Australians such as carbon-offset cremations, burials and funeral services.

"Centennial Park's funeral industry open day will assist South Australians to better understand these so they can make informed choices."

In addition to environmental displays, Centennial Park's funeral industry open day will include:

Regular tours of Centennial Park's crematorium including question and
answer sessions.
Free limousine tours of Centennial Park's gardens and grounds.
Hourly garden tours from 10.30am to 3.30pm.
A vacant burial site and underground vault for viewing.
Coffin display.
Hearse display, including historic horse drawn hearse, 1928 Vauxhall
hearse and 1938 Oldsmobile.
Floral demonstrations with a professional florist who will show visitors
how to create attractive floral displays.
Grave-digging machinery and garden equipment display.

Headstone lettering and guilding demonstrations by the Monumental Masons
Two 30-minute education sessions on pre-planning and organising a
funeral, estate planning and coping with grief at 11am and 2pm,
presented by Centennial Park, Tindall Gask Bentley, Funeral Plan
Management, the Australian Funeral Directors Association (AFDA) and
Alfred James Funerals.
Facilities to sign up for funeral plans through Funeral Plan Management.
Information about organ donation from the SA Organ Donation Agency with
facilities for visitors to sign up as organ donors.
The opportunity to reflect and light a candle for loved ones who have
passed away in Centennial Park's intimate Mawson Chapel.
Access to Centennial Park's database of people buried or memorialised
within the grounds for those wanting to trace their family history.
Information booths with representatives from Centennial Park, AFDA,
Tindall Gask Bentley, NFDA, Funeral Plan Management, Monumental Masons,
DVD production company Digiflix, florists and grief counsellor Ann Van
der Zwaag.
Refreshments in the chapels foyer with proceeds to support the Daw House
Hospice Foundation, a charitable organisation that provides palliative
care services for people with life-limiting illnesses.

Earlier this year Centennial Park was recognised as the environmental leader in Australia's cemetery industry when it won a United Nations Association of Australia 2009 World Environment Day Award.

Centennial Park's funeral industry open day will be held from 10am to 4pm on Sunday 25 October, at 760 Goodwood Road Pasadena. For further information call 8276 6011 or visit www.centennialpark.org.au

Centennial Park's definitions of environmental burial and cremation options:

Natural burial the body is interred in the ground in a shroud or biodegradable coffin and is not treated with chemical preservatives. A natural burial can take place at a traditional cemetery or designated natural burial ground and may or may not be marked with a headstone. Natural burials that meet legal requirements can take place at Centennial Park.

Bushland burial the body is interred in the same way as a natural burial, but does not feature a traditional headstone. Instead, natural markers such as native trees, shrubs and flowers are used. There is no plaque on the grave, but there may be a list of names on a centralised memorial structure.

Carbon offset cremation, burial and funeral carbon emissions on cremations, burials and funeral services are reduced and offset through an accredited offset scheme. The cemetery makes a commitment to reduce and offset emissions across its entire operations, including administration and maintenance activities. In 2008, Centennial Park became the first cemetery in Australia to offer this at no cost to families and continues to reduce its environmental footprint.

Biodegradable memorial urns traditionally, cremated remains are interred in cemetery memorial gardens within non-biodegradable urns. There is now a range of biodegradable urns available made from paper, recycled materials, hemp and even hand-crafted sea salt.

Media contact: Centennial Park CEO Bryan Elliott on 0418 810 286

Source: Centennial Park Cemetery

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