Anonymous donation gives Vernon Crisis Line $50,000 boost

Image Credit: ADOBE STOCK

VERNON - A big donation from an anonymous donor is helping a Vernon organization continue to make a difference in the community.

The Vernon Crisis Line, which supports people struggling with thoughts of suicide, issues with family, or many other reasons, recently received $50,000 from an anonymous source, according to a press release from the volunteer group.

The donation couldn’t have come at a better time, according to Canadian Mental Health Association executive director Julia Payson, who says the Crisis Line has been struggling with budget shortfalls.

“In the last six years, the calls to the Crisis Line have doubled, yet our volunteer numbers are on the decline. This has posed a significant budget challenge with more staff working on the phones to ensure no call goes unanswered,” Payson says in the release.  “Due to the astonishing generosity (of) this anonymous donor we can continue to offer this essential service, and there is time for increased volunteer recruitment, as well as adjustments to our funding levels to accommodate the need for both staff and volunteers to answer Crisis Line calls.”

In 2016, the Crisis Line answered over 5500 calls with most callers looking for confidential and empowering emotional support.
“We ensure that each caller receives non-judgmental and empowering emotional support, as well as information and resources when appropriate,” Alyssa Christmas, Crisis Line Manager, says.

The Crisis Line is currently looking for volunteers to answer phones and provide an empathetic ear to those in need.
One anonymous Crisis Line volunteer says the experience has been extremely valuable.

“Every time I answer a call, I know I am helping someone at a time they really need to have someone just listen and understand. If you are looking for one of the most rewarding volunteer opportunities in our community, I encourage you to join the Crisis Line team,” the volunteer says.
The next training intake for volunteers is in September. Click here for more information or call 250-545-8074.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston or call 250-309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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