I recently read the words of a client saying that CSS is the only place they can be open about their suicidal thoughts. The statement has stayed with me as I think about the role CSS plays in the lives of the thousands of people who trust us to serve them every year. We see their trust and yours as donors, as the ultimate gift, and we do not take it for granted.
To keep the trust of those we serve and those who support us financially, we believe deeply in living our values: To care from the inside out, To open our hearts and minds, To build connections, and To commit ourselves to growth. It is our collective commitment to these values that has helped CSS navigate the ongoing challenges of the pandemic, as the prolonged state of crisis has impacted the well being of so many in our communities.
Here’s a glimpse into how CSS services have been impacted in the last year:
- An 18% increase in the number of calls to our 24-hour crisis line with a medium to high risk for dying by suicide
- A 32.5% increase in time spent with callers who have medium to high risk for dying by suicide
- Over 25,000 minutes spent speaking to callers who have a medium to high risk for dying by suicide
- 22 individuals who are currently on the waitlist to receive therapeutic services from CSS
- 80% of our therapy referrals are for middle and high school students experiencing traumatic grief and loss
- A 45% increase in the number of community members who received a mental health and suicide prevention training through our Community Education Program.
Though the above program dynamics might paint a picture of the increase in community needs, it is imperative to mention that all of us helpers at CSS are also members of this community and have ourselves been deeply impacted by uncertainty, as well as grief and loss. Please consider your donation as one way that you can stand with us at CSS as we continue to demonstrate resilience during this unprecedented time.
This holiday season, I invite you to be part of our impact. Your gift is the support we need to be able to continue supporting those who reach out to CSS during their time of crisis.
Narges Zohoury Dillon, LMFT