Type of Entry: Helplines, text lines, chat bots
Name: Samaritans helpline
Date added: 1 May 2020
Delivery type: Phone
Owned by: The Samaritans (UK)
Contact: N/A
Website: Samaritans helpline
Cost: No
Target audience: Anyone
Core Elements

Phone helpline: 116 123
Email helpline: jo@samaritans.org 
Post helpline:
Chris
Freepost RSRB-KKBY-CYJK
PO Box 9090
STIRLING FK8 2SA

Key Features

  • 24/7 access to phone line
  • Free
  • One to one communication
  • 24 hour response time on email access
  • Confidential – no contact details are displayed to volunteers
  • Every 7 seconds, Samaritans answers a call for help.
  • Volunteers receive roughly 35 hours blended training as well as continuous development each year to keep their skills up to date

For more information about ways to contact a Samaritan, click here.

Supporting Rationale

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Rating

N/A

Evaluation

Due to callers anonymity, there are difficulties involved in accurately assessing the impact and effectiveness of helplines and reducing risk of those who contact the helpline. However, callers have reported:

  • High levels of appreciation for the service
  • Perceived the helpline to be helpful
  • Have felt listened to

References:

  • Coveney, C., Pollock, K., Armstrong, S. & Moore, J. (2012). Callers' Experiences of Contacting a National Suicide Prevention Helpline: Report of an online survey. The Journal of Crisis Intervention and Suicide Prevention, 33(6), 1-12. Available here.
  • Pollock, K. et al. (2010). An Evaluation of Samaritans Telephone and Email Emotional Support Service. The National Institute for Health Research and The University of Nottingham. Available here.
Recommendations

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Endorsements

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Data Protection Considerations

Calls are confidential aside from certain situations as stated in the Samaritans' safeguarding policy

Calling numbers and email addresses are not displayed to volunteers. If you contact by post, name and address is needed to reply but letters are shredded once a response is provided.

Additional Information

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The aim of the ZSA Resources is to introduce users to a range of existing and new resources with a connection to supporting people with their mental health, bring awareness to and help prevent incidences of suicide.  The ZSA do not endorse individual resources but instead aim to present standardised information to enable the user to make an informed decision over its use.

This resource content was developed and approved in collaboration with the resource owner. If you would like to update this content, please contact us.

For more information on ZSA Resources, please refer to ZSA Policies.

Content last updated: 28/01/2021.

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