Hastings and Rother Samaritans appealing for ‘night owls’


A charity which provides a lifesaving service is looking for fresh faces to join the team.

Hastings and Rother Samaritans provides emotional support to anyone in distress, struggling to cope, or at risk of suicide in 1066 Country and beyond.

The branch is looking for new volunteers to help answer the thousands of phone calls, emails and text messages which pour into the centre each month.

In particular, there is currently a serious shortage of ‘night owl’ volunteers to man the phones during the evenings and overnight, particularly the three-hour shifts between 9pm and 6am.

Of course, anyone who could offer their time in the day during the week or at weekends would also be welcomed with open arms.

Two information events are taking place next week for anyone who would like to find out more about what it takes to become a Samaritan.

One session will take place on Tuesday, February 2, at 7.30pm and the other on Saturday, February 6, at 10am.

Both will take place at the branch at 26 St Andrews Square, Hastings.

For those who decide they would like to join the team, a selection event will take place in March and training sessions will follow.

Once volunteers have completed their training and probationary period, there is also a chance for them to join the branch’s outreach team.

The team works with various organisations including the University of Brighton’s Hastings campus, Maidstone Prison and Woodlands Centre for Acute Care in St Leonards.

There are currently 68 volunteers at the branch, hailing from Hastings, Bexhill, Battle and Rye, as well as the surrounding villages, including Robertsbridge and Pett.

Hastings and Rother Samaritans welcomes volunteers from all walks of life, with the retired, university students and full time workers among its current band of volunteers.

However, volunteers must be over the age of 18.

Samaritans is a listening service and does not offer counselling to its callers.

No previous experience or training is necessary.

For more about the information events or how to get involved with Hastings and Rother Samaritans, call 01424 436666.

For more about the organisation, visit www.samaritans.org/