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Local Samaritans support those in crisis

The number of suicides in Aylesbury Vale rose in 2018.

Published by Scarlett Bawden-Gaul at 8:00am 23rd February 2020. 3-minute read.

Local Samaritans support those in crisis

Samaritans volunteers are supporting people in crisis across Bucks. 

In Aylesbury Vale the number of suicides rose to 16 in 2018 from 11 in the previous year. 

Samaritans is a charity aimed at supporting those in emotional support, struggling to cope or at risk of suicide.

Two volunteers from the Chiltern branch have spoken to Mix96 about the role and the importance of speaking to someone. 

Ian has been a part of the Samaritans for over 15 years:

"We don't tell people what to do, we don't give them advice. Our training is in listening and reflecting back and helping the caller to reach a situation as a result. 

"I applied in the April and took my first call in January, and I'd spent 3/4 months of that period being trained. We also talk about our own lives and any instances of suicide that have come our way to get that out of our system in a way.

"So when we are on a call we aren't thinking our own thoughts we are entirely on the callers side and go wherever they want to take us."

Samaritans offer support through email, text, calls and in some branches face-to-face. 

Small Talk Could Save Lives

Across the UK in 2018 6,507 suicides were registered a 12% rise compared to 2017.

The Samaritans vision is to reduce the number of deaths by suicide, saying it is preventable no inevitable. 

Evie has been volunteering for just over a year, and says being a Samaritan can be difficult at times:

"Especially when you've been speaking to someone in deep detail about their situation. 

"But, that's when we are Samaritans to each other. Where we can support each other and we can discuss how we feel after a call, but everything remains confidential within the Samaritans.

"We have day leaders that look after us that we can call, even out of our shift."

Since joining Ian says that the demand has changed:

"When I started 15 years ago you'd answer the call then chat to your colleague for a while. Now as soon as you're available it will start ringing again. 

"It's pretty much non stop, whereas 15 years ago... There were more agencies and people helping people in other ways and the need is increasing as well."

If you are struggling with your emotions and want to contact a Samaritan you by:

  • Texting 116 123 free from any phone
  • Calling 0330 094 5717 local call charges apply
  • Emailing jo@samaritans.org
  • Visiting branches with a walk in option: Chiltern Samaritans is open for walk ins between 7am and 9.30pm, 149 Station Road, Amersham, Bucks HP6 5DJ, 
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