Samaritans in Torquay are on the hunt for new volunteers to light up the night for callers by offering emotional support for people struggling to cope.
Samaritans of South Devon currently has over 100 volunteers responding to many of the 5.7 million calls for help the charity answers every year across the UK and Ireland, and are always in need of more volunteers to be there for more people.
When you’re feeling overwhelmed, the night time can be particularly tough. Samaritans wants to recruit listener volunteers who are willing to give up a few hours overnight or in the early hours of the morning once or twice a month so people always have someone to turn to.
Samaritans is free to call in confidence any time from any phone on 116 123, even a mobile without credit, and the number does not show up on phone bills. People can also email or text if they are more comfortable to do so.
All volunteers receive full support and training to ensure they are confident and equipped to listen to others and help them work through their problems.
New volunteer Chris from Samaritans of South Devon commented: “Supporting people through the night is such an important part of what Samaritans does. Initially I was worried about the idea of night shifts but, having done a couple I can honestly say they’re some of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done. I’m just there to listen, but for someone alone at 3am that could be everything they need. I sleep soundly after a night shift, knowing I’ve saved a life.
“I was fully supported throughout my training and I’ve met so many amazing people along the way. You’re part of family when you become a Samaritans volunteer and I find myself using the listening skills I’ve learnt through volunteering in my personal life every day.”
Samaritans of South Devon is also looking for various skills to help with the general running of the branch, including: fundraising, housekeeping, admin, social events, publicity etc. There is no fixed time commitment with support roles allowing volunteers to help out when they can.
If you’d like to be the light in the dark for our callers, or become a support volunteer, then come along to our next information evening at 1900 on Monday 3 September. Or you can contact us directly by emailing [email protected] or phoning 07531 789828.