The Unfuneral

Last week, a group of students in New Bedford, Massachusetts held a funeral for the problems facing them and their friends:

‘Eight youths from the Responsible Attitudes toward Pregnancy, Parenting and Prevention Youth Council [RAPPP] held “The Rebirth of New Bedford: New Bedford Resurrected” last week to bury issues that plague today’s youths.

They held the “unfuneral,” complete with a makeshift casket, eulogy and burial ceremony recently at the city garden where social ills—such as drug abuse, abandonment, racism, gang violence, AIDS and teen drinking—were laid to rest and marked by headstones that will remain in the garden permanently.’

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The Standard-Times

Each student chose an ailment and created its headstone. The students collaborated on a eulogy, and took turns reading from it during the funeral.

The headstones were placed in New Bedford’s Peace Works! City Garden. Michelle Guilbeault, youth coordinator for RAPPP, said that students thought the headstones would be ‘better than just growing flowers’.

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