“I like texting, it’s a discrete way that no one knows that I’m doing” – Texter
Text Line Counseling for suicide prevention
Welcome! Thank you for being interested in learning about Crisis Support Services’ Text Line Volunteer Program. Helping others through text is one of the newest forms of suicide prevention and crisis intervention. Text Line Counselors become adept at helping people through this new medium on the cutting edge.
“Im glad that you’re there to listen” – Texter
Crisis Support Services provides free text counseling to people in Alameda County from 4 pm – 11 pm, 7 days a week.
Below is a brief description of the Text Line Program’s training and commitment (for more detailed information please read the Text Line Volunteer application).
Text Line Counselors
The kind of person suited for being a Text Line Counselor is caring and empathetic and also invested in growing as a counselor and as a person. An interest in – and a respect for – young people is crucial. Text Line Counselors interact with texters who may be reaching out for support for the first time. Others regularly text us as they seek a touch stone to help stay stable.
Text Line Counselors gain unique insight and experience in the mental health field while working collaboratively with a supportive team. By providing non-judgmental, person-centered counseling, Text Line Counselors support those in crisis and help reduce the stigma around mental illness and suicide. No experience necessary. Excellent training provided.
“You’ve been a big part of my life for the couple hours I’ve known you” – Texter
Difference between Text Line Counselors and Crisis Line Counselors
Text Line Counselors answer crisis texts that come in to our Text Line Program during shifts at our office sometime between the hours of 4pm – 11pm, 7 days a week. People who text our Text Line Program are usually younger than the people who call our Crisis Line Program. They can range from anywhere from middle school age, up to college age.
Text shifts can be busy with several texts coming in at once, but sometimes there are lulls. When this is the case, Text Line Counselors can work on projects for the Text Line Program, or if they choose, can work on their own projects such as doing homework or catching up on email, or just relaxing.
Training flow and time commitment
During training, Text Line volunteers attend several weekends and/or evenings of classroom training, attend training shifts in small groups, and one on one with a trainer. After graduating the training program we ask for a commitment of one 4 to 7 hour weekly shift sometime between 4:00pm and 11:00 pm for a year, with a minimum of 52 shifts. Vacations and sick days can be worked around.*Of course, we love volunteers to stay longer than one year if they like!
“Thanks for everything it really helped :)” – Texter
More Details and How to Apply
For more information about the Text Line Volunteer position, please read the introduction on the application. If you are interested in applying for the Text Line Volunteer position you can submit the application via the online application form or download and return the completed application via email to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com. If you would like confirmation that your application has been received please email firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a message at 510-420-2492.