If you feel like you are a good listener and could commit three hours a week to make a world of difference to someone else, then you might consider volunteering with Aware.
The national charity, who support people impacted by depression and bipolar disorder, is seeking to recruit volunteers for their free Support Line service by the end of the year, in a bid to bolster supports on offer and ensure no call goes unanswered.
Aware has seen a significant spike in the number of people reaching out for support and information over the past number of years and has put out a call for people who have empathy, compassion, and three hours a week to assist with the charity’s Support Line, which operates 365 days a year from 10am to 10pm Monday to Sunday.
Volunteers can work remotely from their own home, or at their Dublin headquarters on Leeson Street if convenient. Since 2020 and the advance of remote working software during the pandemic, geography is not a limiting factor for volunteering as once onboard training is completed, volunteers can operate the Support Line from their own home.
The services are free to anyone aged 18 years and over who needs support, advice and information about issues relating to their own mood or the mood of a friend or family member, or who experience depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, or related mood conditions.
Support Line volunteers receive initial and on-going training from Aware. They can help callers to identify helpful options and actions which are available to them at the time of the call as well as being able to inform callers about appropriate, alternative services available within Aware and externally.
Stephen McBride, Director of Services at Aware said, “We are exceptionally fortunate to have so many committed and dedicated volunteers, without whom we could not provide our services that impact so positively on so many people throughout Ireland. Volunteers are the backbone of Aware, and now more than ever, we need your help. You can make a real difference. You can help us to be there for another person.” Stephen continued to say that volunteers also find it incredibly rewarding. “People choose to volunteer for a variety of reasons. For some, it offers the chance to give something back and to make a difference. For others, it provides an opportunity to develop new skills or build on existing experience and knowledge.”
To apply to be a Support Line volunteer, you must be over 21 years of age and be available for three hours once a week for at least 18 months. Fluency in written and spoken English is required and full training will be provided.
Aware, which was established in 1985, is the national organisation providing free support, education, and information for people impacted by depression, bipolar disorder, and related mood conditions 365 days of the year.
If you are impacted by depression, bipolar disorder, or other mood related conditions, you can contact Aware’s free Support Line 7 days a week from 10am to 10pm on 1800 80 48 48.
For more on Aware and volunteering, see www.aware.ie/get-involved/volunteering