We strive to live a sustainable life. What about a sustainable death? Here at the Gawler Environment Centre (GEC) we are tingling with excitement about our new, innovative, arts-based initiative to bring our community together and learn something new at the same time. We are calling it … the Eco Coffin Project. Further details are provided below.

If you would like a short snapshot of the project check out this ABC News story.

Or read this article on ABC online.

You can also watch our Natural Burial Options webinar on our You Tube channel. We are new to delivery of webinars so there are a few tech issues to begin with, but persevere and you will see the amazing story of this project unfold!

Follow our progress:

The purpose of the Eco Coffin Project is to:

  1. explore the question: what is a sustainable death?
  2. increase our Death Literacy, and
  3. raise awareness of Natural Burial.

Our first program was FULLY BOOKED within the first hour after the project launch at the 2019 Sustainable Living Festival and we started a waiting list.

Starting in March 2020, 10 lucky people, over 6 weeks for 3 hours/week, will uncover, explore and share the unfolding story of sustainable death in this interactive, informative, arts-based community program. There will be guest speakers, site visits, workshops. They will assemble and decorate either an eco-coffin or organic shroud to take home at the end of the project. It’s theirs to keep! The project will culminate in a Death Café and an Art Exhibition to display the decorated eco-coffins and organic shrouds to the wider community. Thanks to our Sponsors the cost is just $50 per person.

Download the project flyer – click here

Eco Coffin Project Flyer – Click on image to download PDF
Eco Coffin Project Flyer – Click on image to download PDF

We are fully booked for the 2020 program. Want to be on our next ECO COFFIN PROJECT program? Email your details to: coordinator@gawlerenvironmentcentre.org.au

Follow our progress over the coming months through this series of blog posts:

The idea: Where did the idea for the Eco Coffin Project originate? Click here to find out more.

The issues: Our first post explores the questions and environmental issues that sparked our interest in wanting to create this community project. Click here to read more.

The program: Are you one of the 10 curious people we are seeking to participate in this 6-week program commencing early in 2020 to explore, inform and create a very personal story of what sustainable death means to you?. Click here to find out more.

The launch: The Eco Coffin Project was officially launched by the Mayor at the Sustainable Living Festival on 27 October 2019. Check out the vibrant photos of people of all ages creatively decorating our eco-coffin with colourful biodegradable craft materials. Click here to find out more.

Week 1: After much anticipation and excitement, the 6-week Eco Coffin Project started on Sunday 1 March at Riverdell Spiritual Centre. Our courageous, pioneering group of 10 met for the first time. Magic happened as we introduced ourselves, checked out the eco-coffins on display, shared our vision for our shrouds and eco-coffins and experienced the Pushing Up Daisies Workshop. To find out our insights from week 1 through words and photos click here.

Week 2: We were out and about for a behind-the-scenes tour of Adelaide Cemeteries Authority‘s crematorium and 2 natural burial grounds. To find out the answers to questions such as: Can a body be cremated that is wrapped only in a shroud with no coffin? click here.

Week 3: * c r e a t i v e * i n s p i r a t i o n * was our theme for this week, sharing our ideas for decorating our 5 coffins and making our 5 shrouds and how we are going sourcing materials. We also had a demo of how to assemble our eco coffins. See the pics here.

Week 4: Due to Covid-19 physical distancing we took our program online via zoom. Our guest speaker this week was Helen Roberts. Helen does so much in the space of supporting people around death and dying. She is an end-of-life guide, Heartfelt photographer and volunteer palliative care worker. After a very informative sessions with lots of questions and discussions we all did a ‘show ‘n tell’ of how we are progressing with our making and decorating of our shrouds and eco-coffins. For more details click here.

Week 5: Again via zoom we connected online and learned so much from our local Funeral Directors, Taylor & Forgie. Click here for our insights into body care at home, burial grounds and sustainable coffins and shrouds.

Thank you to our sponsors: Gawler Environment Centre, Adelaide and Mt Lofty Ranges Natural Resource Management Board, Adelaide Cemeteries Authority, Town of Gawler, Link Edge, Abby Buckley Our Family Celebrant
Thank you to our sponsors