Samaritans on hand this fes­tive sea­son

Peo­ple of­fered help over Christ­mas and New Year

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Alan Hayes alan.hayes@trin­i­tymir­

THE fes­tive sea­son can be any­thing but that for many peo­ple fac­ing lone­li­ness, emo­tional tur­moil and stress.

Hilling­don Samaritans will be avail­able all through the fes­tive sea­son on 01895 253355.

Vol­un­teers will be avail­able round the clock, pro­vid­ing a safe space for any­one who needs to talk.

More than 45 per cent of men who re­sponded to an on­line survey by Samaritans said they felt more wor­ried at Christ­mas than other times of the year, and while many peo­ple will be spend­ing the hol­i­days with friends and fam­ily, more than a third of male re­spon­dents ad­mit­ted to feel­ing lonely at Christ­mas.

How­ever, men are also much less likely than women to have a pos­i­tive view of coun­selling or ther­apy, and when they do use th­ese ser­vices, it is at the point of cri­sis.

The char­ity is en­cour­ag­ing men to seek help and con­sider call­ing Samaritans if things are get­ting to them over the fes­tive pe­riod.

Branch di­rec­tor Donna Har­ris said: “Many of our call­ers have told us that Christ­mas is a tough time for them, which is why our vol­un­teers will be avail­able round the clock, for any­one who is strug­gling to cope, in­clud­ing on Christ­mas Day.

“We’re in­cred­i­bly grate­ful to the in­spi­ra­tional peo­ple who keep our ser­vice run­ning ev­ery sin­gle day of the year when many oth­ers are closed.”

Ray, who will be vol­un­teer­ing on Christ­mas Day, said: “We an­swer lots of calls over the Christ­mas pe­riod and many of those are from men who feel like their fam­ily would be bet­ter off with­out them.

“That’s why it’s so im­por­tant that Samaritans vol­un­teers like me are there for those men when they need to talk and any­one who needs us over this pe­riod.”

You can help Samaritans an­swer ev­ery phone call over Christ­mas and the New Year by donat­ing just £4. Go to w w w. s a m a r i t a n s. o r g / do­nate.

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