The Lonely Funeral

Every year up to twenty people die completely alone in Amsterdam. They are illegal migrants, drug mules, or simply people who cut off all social contacts.

Best Documentary: Honorable Mention2010 Third Coast / Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition

2010 / Michele Ernsting / Radio Netherlands, The Netherlands

Every year up to twenty people die completely alone in Amsterdam. They are illegal migrants, drug mules, or simply people who cut off all social contacts.

In the absence of friends or family, a public servant and a poet hold a remarkable ceremony for each and every one of them. Over time, these two - Ger and Frank - have forged an unlikely friendship around their respect for the lonely of Amsterdam.

The Lonely Funeral won a Best Documentary: Honorable Mention Award in the 2010 Third Coast / Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition. The story was produced in 2010 for The Global Perspective series by Radio Netherlands Worldwide.

(total running time: 26:55)


produced by

Michele Ernsting

Michele Ernsting worked as a radio journalist in Canada before moving to the Netherlands to study international law at the University of Amsterdam.


Featured in


May we recommend…