The South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG), which is now going into its 24th year of running an 18 line call centre for callers dealing with all Mental Health issues, including the country’s only Suicide Helpline. SADAG is in need of additional volunteer telephonic Counsellors. The need for more people on our shifts, is due to the massive publicity over the last few years which has led to an increase in calls to the call centre.
We train all our telephonic counsellors over a weekend at the beginning of March, and prior to that you have the opportunity to sit in our call centre and train under our senior counsellors. “Working on the evening shifts, after a day at work, by helping other people who have problems by giving advice, referrals and someone they can confide in .“said R. (Male 60+). Our Shifts are from 8am to 12pm, 12pm to 4pm or 4pm to 8pm, seven days a week.
SADAG has over 100 volunteer counselors who give their time, skills, and support to people who need assistance, guidance and referrals in dealing with various mental health issues such as Depression, Bipolar, Substance Abuse, Anxiety, Panic, OCD and Suicidal thoughts, all of which our counsellors are trained to help with. They even help patients on the phone after a traumatic event, like Rape, Accidents, Violence and may assist them with being admitted to an appropriate hospital for treatment.
Many of our counsellors have had Depression or PTSD themselves and now feel stronger to help other people because they can fully understand what they are going through. “SADAG gives me the opportunity to give a Positive impact on other people’s lives, I believe we touch many people through our help and the messages I give, I strive to show empathy and direction on every call” says B.( 27 year old, Female).
For more information on volunteering at SADAG or for a volunteer counsellor application form, download the form at www.sadag.org – Just click on the link under the VOLUNTEER section to the Left Hand Side of the web page. Or call 0800 70 80 90 and speak to Lara or Zoleka.
The SADAG call centre answers an average of 400 calls a day and handles hundreds of emails, SMS’s, Facebook, and Twitter, “There are ways to contact us when you feel like you don’t have anywhere else to turn.” Said Cassey Chambers, Director.