October 12, 2017 at 2:34 pm #3145
There’s a new volunteer opportunity at Kids Help Phone that folks in the ACCESS OM network might be interested in – spread the word!
This autumn, KHP is launching a trial texting service to help provide empathetic support to young people via text (SMS) messaging. Right now, they’re gearing up to train and recruit Crisis Responders who will answer texts from young people. The volunteer position is remote (meaning that volunteers are able to be trained and support young people from anywhere in Canada, as long as they have a strong, reliable internet connection). The online training is 36 hours and Crisis Responders are asked to make a commitment to volunteer for 4 hours a month for 1 year. Although the volunteers are all working from their own homes, they are never alone as they are overseen, in real time, by paid, professional Supervisors who are there to support the volunteers in their role.
A person can become a Volunteer Crisis Responder by following these 5 steps:
1) Fill out the online application, which should take approximately 30 minutes (https://kidshelpphone.formstack.com/forms/text_service_crisis_responder_application)
2) If selected for training, obtain and successfully get a Vulnerable Sector check (the Kids Help Phone folks will tell you how to do that, depending on where you live)
3) Complete the 36-hour online training within 6 weeks.
5) Take your first shift and start making a difference in the lives of young people!
The training will help equip Crisis Responders with the skills for active listening, responding with empathy, evaluating conversations for imminent risk, and safety planning. Not only that, but Crisis Resonders are basically superheroes with a computer, ready to listen and support young people!
Most importantly, Crisis Responders are never left alone when supporting young people. Every shift will be monitored by a professional Supervisor with a background in mental health. Crisis Responders will get to know their Supervisors really well as Supervisors work with them through training, and the Supervisors will be within reach whenever Crisis Responders are answering texts.
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