Your good Sa­mar­i­tans

New direc­tor at Chilterns branch

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - COMMUNITY -

Tobi Nehm from Amer­sham, who re­cently be­gan his three-year vol­un­tary role as branch direc­tor, said: “Our op­er­a­tions cen­tre is on the first floor and un­til now has only been ac­ces­si­ble by a steep stair­case. We de­cided to fundraise to cover the cost of in­stalling a lift so that dis­abled peo­ple who are in­ter­ested in sup­port­ing those in emo­tional dis­tress and de­spair can also vol­un­teer their time. We’re proud to be a very in­clu­sive branch where all vol­un­teers are welcome.

“The lift was do­nated by a lo­cal build­ing de­vel­oper from a site he was re­mod­elling and we are very grate­ful to him and for the gen­er­ous do­na­tions which have cov­ered the in­stal­la­tion and re­mod­elling costs to make this project pos­si­ble. We are to­tally de­pen­dent on do­na­tions from lo­cal peo­ple and busi­nesses for all the work we do.”

The Chilterns branch, based in Sta­tion Road, Amer­sham, was founded in 1968 and is one of the largest in the UK.

In the last year its vol­un­teers spoke to 25,368 call­ers by tele­phone, wel­comed 278 peo­ple to the cen­tre for a face-to-face con­ver­sa­tion and replied to 3,153 emails and 7,879 text mes­sages.

Mr Nehm added: “This is an ex­cit­ing time in the branch’s 48-year his­tory. I want to make sure that the lo­cal com­mu­nity knows the var­i­ous ways they can con­tact us if they need emo­tional sup­port. We can be con­tacted by phone, text or email. We also of­fer a drop-in ser­vice from 7am to 9pm ev­ery day and there is no need to make an ap­point­ment. We are al­ways look­ing for new vol­un­teers to help us pro­vide a 24-7 ser­vice to those in need. Sa­mar­i­tans is a safe and con­fi­den­tial place where ev­ery­one will be lis­tened to with­out judge­ment.”

Chilterns Sa­mar­i­tans will hold an open day on Satur­day, May 28 from 2pm to 4pm to give peo­ple the op­por­tu­nity to find out more about its work and how to get in­volved ei­ther as a lis­ten­ing vol­un­teer or by help­ing with fundrais­ing or ad­min­is­tra­tive sup­port.

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