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‘Hi, How Can I Help You?’ What It Takes to Be a Crisis Line Volunteer

Posted by & filed under News, Volunteer.

This story was published in the Tyee and written by Hilary Leung. Below is a short excerpt from the story.

Annie Hsu, a gen-Xer, has been volunteering at the Crisis Intervention and Suicide Prevention Centre of BC since 2018. She had previously worked in a technical and creative field but left the stressful environment for the helping sector, seeking work that aligned with her personal values.

Since she was young, her instinct has been to help others, Hsu said.

Hsu is one of more than 450 volunteers working at the crisis hotline, according to Akhila Blaise, its co-director.

Volunteers take calls and chats from people all over B.C. who are struggling with suicidal thoughts, mental health, eating disorders and other issues. They must undergo intensive training that takes around 110 hours before they start taking calls.

And volunteers can’t begin answering calls within a year of calling the line themselves or recovering from major life events like divorce, addiction or mental illness.

The full story is available online.

Volunteering at the Crisis Centre is a great way to make a contribution to your community. Learn about our different positions and apply today.