Amersham Samaritans


A talk on the work of the Samaritans charity

Samaritans 

 

Susan & Rachel gave an interesting insight  into the work of the Samaritans .

 

Over the country there are 200 branches which deal with 74,500 calls per week , 27,000 emails a month and 39,500 texts . Surprisingly the service is only available in the UK so

they often have calls or emails from abroad and the telephone service allows them free calls for up to half an hour

 

The local branch is at the top of Station Road and draws volunteers from the local as far as High Wycombe and Berkhamsted. Currently they have 106 Volunteers. Their aim is to prove the service 24 hour a day on all 7 days of the week but there are not sufficient volunteers to allow for this at present and the branch has to be closed at some quieter times.

The local branch is linked in with other branches so that calls can be diverted automatically if all the phones at one centre are busy.

 

The service is totally confidential and non judgemental. They deal with unhappiness , despair  , emotional health , suicidal behaviour and mental health problems .They often signpost callers to other services such as Childline , CAB & AA. They get a 500 nuisance calls a month which are blocked by the service so they have a very number of blocked callers . When dealing with suicidal calls they stay on the line with the caller until the end

 

The service goes out into schools to teach  children how to deal with the stresses of exams or moving schools

 

They are now collating their types of calls so they can identify trends and so improve their service .

 

The service can be very stressful for the volunteers so the service provides support to the volunteers if they need it.