Samaritans Ireland is urging Galwegians to get involved with the charity, give something back to the local community, and make a difference to people’s lives.
The Irish charity is holding two open meetings on Tuesday September 2 and Thursday September 5 at 8pm at 14 Nuns Island where Galwegians can find out more about becoming a volunteer.
Samaritans is best known for the vital support given to callers on its 24-hour telephone service, but volunteers are also on hand to offer support by SMS, email and face-to-face in communities, festival, outreach events and in prisons.
Men and women of all ages and walks of life are among those who dedicate three hours a week to those most in need. Some overnight shifts are also required.
Anne Wynne, director of Samaritans in Galway says: “Please come to one of our open meetings, to meet current volunteers and to find out about the training and support we offer to new volunteers. Once you finish your training, the journey begins.”
Enda, an air traffic controller, who has been volunteering in Ennis since 2012, says anyone can be a Samaritan as long as they believe in what they are doing and are willing to listen.
“Allowing someone the space to talk, and really listening to what they want to talk about, are skills I’ve tried to adhere to both on and off duty.
“What really drives me though are the callers and knowing that by being there to pick up the phone I may have given them a beacon of hope. No matter where you are in life, the need to be heard and the need for empathy are things that will be with us always.”
Established in Ireland in 1962, Samaritans is based in 21 towns across the country with over 1,800 active volunteers on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
To find out more about becoming a volunteer with Samaritans in Galway telephone 086 2468203 or email [email protected].