What’s What: At this difficult time, anxiety, stress, fear and isolation are widespread among the medical professional community and beyond. Would you like to give your time and make a difference?
Amava Take: Crisis Text Line is the free, 24/7 text line for people in crisis across the United States. In addition to helping anyone who texts HOME to 741741, they are taking care of true heroes in real-time. Health care professionals and essential workers are showing up on the frontlines during the coronavirus pandemic—risking their health every day to help other people. They need fast, free, crisis counseling at their fingertips. And Crisis Text Line is there. People who text FRONTLINE to 741741 are immediately connected to someone who can help. That someone could be you.
Question and Answers:
What Does a Crisis Text Line Crisis Counselor Do?
Crisis Text Line Crisis Counselors work remotely from anywhere with a computer and secure internet connection. They support texters in going from a hot moment to a cool calm through active listening, collaborative problem solving, and safety planning.
How Do I Become a Crisis Counselor through Crisis Text Line?
It all begins with training. In 30 hours, you’ll walk away knowing reflective listening, collaborative problem solving, and crisis management. (These are skills that will help in your personal relationships too!). Because training is completed entirely online you can train from anywhere. Many Crisis Counselors will highlight their experience on their resumes when interviewing for jobs, applying to programs, and building out their LinkedIn profiles.
What is the time commitment like?
Crisis Counselors commit to volunteering 4 hours per week until 200 hours are reached, ideally within one year. Before you begin as a Crisis Counselor, you’ll first need to complete training, which will provide you with all of the expertise you need to successfully and empathetically navigate crisis intervention. The training is free, but it costs Crisis Text Line $1,008 to train each Crisis Counselor, thus they ask that you see it through and serve out your minimum 200-hour commitment. Texter volume is highest at night. The greatest need for Crisis Counselors is between 7pm and 3am PST (10pm and 6am EST).
How will I be supported as a Crisis Counselor?
Crisis Text Line provides multiple layers of support for each volunteer Crisis Counselor. There are Supervisors and Coaches available to support you through each stage of your journey. Once you’re taking conversations, each one will be overseen by a Supervisor who will provide real-time support for you. Supervisors are qualified and empathetic Crisis Text Line staff members with expertise in crisis intervention. Through this collaborative approach, Supervisors provide Crisis Counselors with security and stability, serve as the liaison to emergency and child protection services, and instill positivity to ensure texters receive the highest level of care. Coaches support Crisis Counselors through every step of the training, give feedback on conversations, support with debriefing during difficult moments, and can answer questions about all things Crisis Text Line.
Special Requirements: To apply, applicants must be 18 or older and have a US Social Security Number. You must also submit 2 references (references can be friends, family members, previous coworkers, managers etc.). To volunteer, Crisis Counselors must have access to reliable Internet access and a personal computer.
Setting it up: You can help. Visit Crisis Text Line and start the process.