TEEN LIFELINE INC

Rating: 4.98 stars   64 reviews

Issues: Mental Health

Location: PO Box 10745 Phoenix AZ 85064 USA

Mission: Teen Lifeline was established in 1986 to impact the devastating problem of teen suicide through a free, confidential, peer supported hotline and life skills development that empowers Arizona's youth to reach their full potential. The core of Teen Lifeline is its Peer Counseling Hotline which provides troubled youth throughout Arizona the opportunity to access immediate help from a Peer Counselor 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Teen Lifeline is the only Peer Counseling Hotline in Arizona and one of only 32 nation-wide. Each year, Teen Lifeline receives more than 12,000 calls for help from youth ranging in age from 8 to 22. Calls are answered by Peer Counselors who receive a minimum of 72 hours of training and are supervised at all times by a master's level behavioral health clinician. The training and staff support allow these volunteers to confidently help other teens resolve problems ranging from school problems and relationship issues to suicide, dating violence, and being a victim of abuse. By providing a free, confidential service, which is available to address any issues that a teen may be facing, Teen Lifeline helps prevent unresolved problems from leading a youth to consider suicide as an option. In October 2003, Teen Lifeline received Crisis Intervention Program Certification through the American Association of Suicidology and was the first peer counseling hotline to receive such certification. One of the core values of AAS is that every citizen has the basic right to necessary assistance in life threatening or other crises. This value reflects the basic philosophy that an active intervention must be done in life threatening situations. AAS certification assures the community that the services provided by Teen Lifeline adheres to current, nationally recognized best practices standards of care, training and a commitment to quality improvement.
Results: In 2013, Teens Lifeline received 12,757 hotline calls, an increase of 10.3% from 2012. This demonstrates that peer counseling continues to be a critical tool for troubled youth in Arizona. Our Community Education program reached over 36,000 people, providing awareness, education and prevention within the community focusing on various teen issues such as teen suicide, depression and grief. We provided services in 147 schools, 31 community and youth based organizations, 6 corporate business, and 9 conferences. Teen Lifeline has trained 73 new teen volunteers bringing our total to 106 active ten volunteers. All Teen Lifeline Peer Counselors complete the Life Skills Development Program before they can answer any calls.
Target demographics: Youth in Arizona.
Geographic areas served: State of Arizona.
Programs: The peer-to-peer hotline is a 24-hour hotline where teens can call to talk to teens and they can help each other make healthy decisions. Our Life Skills Development program trains the teens to answer the hotline, as well as teaches them skills such as communication, listening and problem-solving (along with other skills) that they will use throughout their lives. Our Community Outreach and Education program teaches teens how to deal with suicide and depression, grief and loss, stress and coping, and bullying. We also have presentations for adults on what to do if you believe a teen is suicidal. Most presentations are free of charge.
2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

I learned about Teen Lifeline in 2013, much later than I wish I would have because I think this organization would have done wonders for me when I was a teen and struggling with depression. It would have been nice knowing I could have called and spoken to someone my age sympathetic to what I was going through. What they do at Teen Lifeline is important: it saves lives and their presence needs to be more widespread and well-known. I made it out of my teens thankfully, but somewhere, right now, a teen is struggling and this place is there to help them.

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Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

Teen Lifeline is an organization I learned about through their Fundraising Coordinator, who has shared the history and mission of the program with me. They directly address the tragedy of teen suicide in Arizona by running a telephone hotline for any teens in Az (or the country, because they receive overflow calls), who are experiencing any concerns relating to suicidal thoughts, abuse, incest, family issues, or personal or mental health concerns. When I saw a documentary film called Bullied Into Silence, I heard even more about Teen Lifeline's high school and college students who volunteer their time to staff the hotline. They go through rigorous training, paid for by donations, to become confident and capable on the hotline. From what I've heard from staff, they are amazing people who have directly led to saving lives. Not only do they operate a hotline, but Teen Lifeline hosts events and performs outreach in schools to educate teachers, students, and parents about suicide.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Unsure

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Rating: 5 stars  

One of my former colleagues recently took a position with Teen Lifeline in Phoenix. We had worked together with other non-profit organizations on environmental and LGBT equality campaigns in Arizona, raising money and educating the public. Since he started with Teen Lifeline, I've heard nothing but incredible things about the organization. I think what impresses me the most is their commitment to training peer volunteers to handle incoming calls. These high school students volunteer their time and energy to be trained to answer suicide calls - what a way to spend your free time at age 16! And they keep coming back to answer those calls - because of the training they are able to get, the environment Teen Lifeline fosters around the office, and the tangible impact their work has everyday as they are there for their troubled peers. Keep up the good work!

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Rating: 5 stars  

My experience with Teen LIfeline goes back to when I was a teenager and had friends who called for help when they faced a crisis. As I became a professional educator, I was able to see the volunteers in action and provide resources to help them be as prepared as possible to support their callers. Now, as a classroom teacher, I rely on Teen Lifeline as a resource for my students. In every case, Teen Lifeline is there to provide resources, support, or just a friendly ear for kids who may not have anyone to listen or help.

Now I am watching one of my students who has helped by Teen Lifeline as she is inspired to give back as a voluteer. Watching this cycle inspired me to want to share my story with others to help continue their important work.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the teenagers they have helped. The callers tehy support everyday and the teen volunteers who learned invaluable tools and lessons through their volunteer experience.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

provide additional resources so they could expand their reach and continue their great work.

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