What We Do

Our purpose

Final Passages offers a personal, natural and green approach to end of life care. We offer courses, presentations, educational materials, consultations, referrals and resources that prepare and support individuals, and the community, to help plan, guide, and provide support during environmentally-friendly home or family-directed funerals.

Our work serves the needs of community members from all cultural, economic, religious and spiritual perspectives.

Did you know…?

In California, a family member or Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care (DPAHC) Agent can act in lieu of the funeral director, making all of the decisions and orchestrating funeral arrangements. To find information on laws and regulations regarding caring for your own dead, in other states, please visit our Resources section.


Final Passages’ Founder
Jerri Lyons at Jasmine’s
side during a three-day
vigil ceremony

Together, we continue to ask:
How can we create ritual to honor our loved ones in the comfort of our own home and in a way that reflects who they were in life? How can we turn the tide of commerce and reclaim a mystery that has alluded us for centuries and helped people heal through their grieving? How can we help other families to be empowered during one of the most incredible and spiritual rites of passage? We celebrate the growing number of people interested in finding relevant and fulfilling ways to answer these queries.

Founded in 1995, Final Passages is the first organization in the United States with the mssion to inform and educate the public about their rights to care for their own dead.

Final Passages is a non-profit, educational institute and resource center dedicated to conscious dying, and a holistic, green, compassionate and dignified alternative to conventional funeral and after-death practices.

We were the first nationwide organization to create a death midwifery and home funeral guidance training program.

“The way our society cares for people at the end of life can be impersonal and inappropriate. I see Final Passages as a valuable step…to reclaim the process of closure on the life of a loved one.”
–Katherine Foster, M.D.

Final Passages serving you

Final Passages, through our Educational Program, prepares and supports individuals in making informed decisions about creating and carrying out their own funeral arrangements.

Final Passages provides expert guidance in the exploration of choices surrounding the death of a loved one and compassionate alternatives to current funeral practices.

Final Passages is active in the community, educating through family consultations, as well as presentations at colleges, funeral societies, churches, health-care agency and medical facility in-services and public seminars.

Final Passages has participated in over 150 home or family-directed funerals. Through our shared research, educational materials and experience families are able to make informed decisions, take charge of all of the funeral arrangements and secure profound closure and healing without incurring alarming debt.

Final Passages has achieved national recognition through publications, newspapers, magazines, professional journals and radio interviews for an educational program designed to provide a personalized approach to after death-care.

Final Passages is a consumer advocate supporting actions that defend an individual’s funeral rights and gives moral and social instruction regarding the funeral industry.

All of these accomplishments have been achieved through Final Passages volunteers and their countless hours of hard work, perseverance, patience and determination. We have been sustained solely through individual consultations, sale of educational materials, workshops, and small donations.

Support us in our work – make a donation now!

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