Borderers are being reminded that Samaritans will be working 24/7, even over Christmas and Hogmanay to help those in need.
Trained volunteers at Borders Branch in Selkirk are among those providing round the clock support throughout December for anyone who is feeling alone or is struggling.
The trained volunteers have been working throughout the pandemic, and will be answering calls which are free and confidential.
The team have been based in Selkirk for 40 years and currently has a dedicated team of 29 volunteers. Last year, they answered 3955 calls, 565 emails and 982 text messages, as well as delivering outreach events in our communities.
Anyone can contact Samaritans FREE anytime from any phone on 116 123, even a mobile without credit. This number won’t show up on your phone bill. You can also email email@example.com or visit www.samaritans.org.
A survey of 1400 Samaritans across the UK and Ireland found around a quarter have spoken to people who were feeling concerned about their wellbeing during Christmas and the winter period. Loneliness and uncertainty around how they will spend the festive period are often cited as what people find difficult at this time of year.
Last Christmas volunteers across 19 Samaritans branches in Scotland answered over 18,800 calls for help by phone, email or letter.
Residents can help Borders Samaritans to be there for people who need emotional support during the festive period by making a donation at www.samaritans.org/scotland/branches/selkirk.
Local MP, John Lamont, recently met with the Director of Borders Samaritans to hear about how Christmas and New Year can be difficult, and the vital work of volunteers in the Borders.
John Lamont MP said:
“This has been a really tough year and Christmas is now just a few days away. Although it can be a happy time for many, it is a real struggle for some, especially as this will not be a normal Christmas.
“I was blown away by the great work that Borders Samaritans have put in this year. They have been there for people 24/7 even at the height of coronavirus, and they will be there over the Christmas period too.
“The volunteers receive high quality training and mentoring over a number of months to ensure that they are ready to help those in need of support. Their selfless work helps people across the country see a way through the challenges they are facing.
Rupert Kendal, Director of Borders Samaritans, added:
“Christmas is a time when loneliness can really hit home and that feeling might be heightened this year.
“I want people to know that Samaritans will be here to talk and to listen, 24/7, for anyone who needs us, or who find themselves struggling this Christmas.
“Every call for help is answered by a trained volunteer and talking to us is free and confidential. Samaritans has never been a more vital lifeline. Please remember you don’t have to face things alone. You can talk to us, day or night, on 116 123 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.”