TEEN LIFELINE INC

Rating: 4.98 stars   61 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  

Teen LIfeline is an eye-opening, life-saving organization that helps teenagers through difficult times. It serves as a helpful reminder that life will get better and that all problems can be worked through. The staff and personal put 110% into helping others. This is truly a wonderful group and something all teenagers should know about. Life dishes many unfair road blocks, and it's important to know that you are not alone and that problems can be solved. Teen Lifeline shares choices and options with those who are struggling. More than anything, Teen Lifeline lends an ear to listen and talk through the issues.

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

Figure out how to make more people aware of Teen LIfeline.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

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

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

The peer to peer concept, where teens talk to teens, makes Teen Lifeline a unique and outstanding organization tackling the painful issue of teenage suicide.
Offering an opportunity to talk, a moment where someone listens who may have the right distance to the problems a caller feels he cannot stand anymore, can be decisive for a decision about life and death.
The teens engaged in Teen Lifeline are highly committed to the mission and deliver outstanding support to their unknown peers on the other line of the phone.

Communities cannot tolerate the issue of teenage suicide inside their boundaries. Supporting the mission of Teen Lifeline appears to be a no brainer for community leaders in private and public sector.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

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

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

I first learned about Teen Lifeline through a customer who was involved as an Advisory Board member and invited me to attend the organization's Crystal Ball event. While I was not able to attend, I took the opportunity to research Teen Lifeline and ultimately wanted to learn more. After taking a tour of the facility and meeting some of the passionate employees and teen volunteers, I ultimately decided that Teen Lifeline was a group I wanted to get involved with. It is an organization that tackles an extremely tough issue (teen suicide) that has plagued the state of Arizona at an alarming rate. By educating and empowering teens to make sound decisions, Teen Lifeline is truly saving the lives of Arizona's teens. In addition, the organization runs extremely lean and I feel that the infrastructure allows Board Members to be actively involved and influential in how the organization operates.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Likely

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

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Rating: 5 stars  

I was a board member from 2001 to 2007. Teen Lifeline is unique in that it provides the teen volunteers with life-changing skills that they can share with their peers that call in for help. Teen Lifeline touches kids and their families at the deepest level. The organization reaches people with no regard for economic status, lifestyle choices or race. What an awesome organization!

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

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

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

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Rating: 5 stars  

I've been a part of Teen Lifeline for over 10 years and have experienced countless times the benefits of the hotline to the teens who call and the life skills training that the peer counselors receive. The staff at Teen Lifeline are among the most committed I've seen at any non-profit and their clinical skills are superior

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

Hearing peer counselors taking calls on the hotline and spending time with the peer counselors.

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

Increase hotline capacity and community outreach to make teens more aware of the service.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

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

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

How did you learn about this organization?

I learned of Teen Lifeline while working for a not-for-profit mental health provider.

What is this organization's top short-term priority?

Stable cash flow and reserves.

What is its top priority in the long run?

Expanding services to reach more Teens who need the service and to provide life skills training to more peer counselors.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I am writing this review of Teen Lifeline as I am personally very passionate about this organization and it is the very least I could do to ensure it’s continued success serving our community.

I am a former Teen Lifeline board member, adult volunteer and the parent of a youth Teen Lifeline counselor. I have had a relationship with Teen Lifeline for fifteen years. My son Anthony volunteered for the organization for 5 years. He became a youth volunteer at a young age and the relationships he built there have served as very strong foundations for his personal development. As I watched his developing passion for the organization and his emotional growth fueled by the staff and mentor councilors at Teen Lifeline, I knew I had to get involved. I personally struggled with severe depression as a teen and the work that was being done by this group tugged at my heart strings. As I volunteered as a fund raiser and parent, I formed great admiration for the staff councilors and the teens they were shaping.

I truly can say that the life skills that were taught to my son in order to strengthen him as a teen counselor, have in turn guided him through some very trying adolescent years and allowed him to always turn back to his Lifeline training.

The years I served as a board member were quite gratifying. I always felt that I was serving a true grass roots organization that was a vital part of helping my community by building a strong resource for our youth. Teen suicide is an unnecessary tragedy. By giving our youth information, choices and a place to turn we truly can lesson the impact of this sad epidemic. The staff and volunteers of this wonderful organization drive this concept forward every day. If I could give a ten star review, I would!

Thank you for this opportunity.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

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

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

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Rating: 5 stars  

I became involved with Teen Lifeline after receiving a tour from a teen counselor who was AMAZING! Since I've become involved I have witnessed first-hand, lives being saved by these wonderful people. They are passionate about helping teens in crisis and my work with them has been so rewarding.

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

I have been at the organization while they have helped teens through some pretty difficult problems and I have also had to refer friends to the organization during a suicide attempt and in all these situations I have been amazed at the positive outcome and the tremendous support they offer.

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

They need more financial supporters. They have so many opportunities to do more that they can not take on because they have such a small staff and small budgets.

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Rating: 5 stars  

The staff of this organization is very well organized and effecient. The teen peer counslers are well trained and are extremely dedicated to helping teens in crisis.
I serve on other non profit boards, but none with the effeciency and dedication of this organization.
From the board to the staff to the teen counslers, everyone is working hard to provide the best place for teens with problems, to get help.

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

Providing a teen the opportunity to make a positive contributuion to the community.

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

Hire a full time fund raiser.

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Rating: 5 stars  

For years my employer has contributed to Teen Lifeline then, over the last few years, my family was exposed to some teenage tragedies that really made me take a closer look at programs that could help Teens. After talking with my teenage daughter I realized that peer counseling, like that provided by Teen Lifeline, was something many teens would use and seek out. So I became a donor and board member of Teen Lifeline to help this wonderful organization grow and provide services to more teens. Teen Lifeline is a small organization, it almost seems more like a family, that could really use help in reaching out to teens in crisis.

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

hearing from the teen volunteers about how the experience has enriched their lives.

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

continue to look for new ways to communicate with potential donors and volunteers. I would also look for ways to diversify our fundraising events.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I have known about TeenLifeline since it's inception in 1986. It was the same year that I started working as a Prevention Specialist in Phoenix Elementary and Roosevelt School districts. I held that job for ten years and there were many times that I gave Teen Lifeline's number to a student who felt sad and alone and needed someone to talk to after school hours.
In 1995 I began working as a part-time hotline supervisor at Teen Lifeline. That's when I saw first hand the critical impact this resource has on youth. It's not just the teen callers who benefit from this service, but also the amazing students who volunteer a significant amount of their time to staff the hotline. Volunteering at Teen Lifeline requires a huge commitment and over 75 hours of training before a teen ever answers a call. As a therapist with a Master's in counseling I was awestruck at the compassion and skill that I witnessed the first time I ever observed a peer counselor pick up the phone and respond to a caller in crisis. Within minutes the peer counselor connected with the caller and got to the heart of the problem. Another 20 minutes and the caller had figured out a resolution to her problem and had a viable action plan. Over the next few years I witnessed, first hand, the undeniable impact that Teen Lifeline has on our community's youth. When a teenager has nowhere to turn, and is facing a problem that seems insurmountable, their thoughts can very quickly turn to suicide. I believe that Teen Lifeline has offered salvation to thousands of desparate teens over the years and prevented countless suicides. I am passionate about Teen LIfeline because I believe that Teen Lifeline saves lives.
In 1998 I was asked to serve on an advisory board to help direct Teen Lifeline's future. In 2000 I became a founding Board member as Teen Lifeline established itself as a stand alone non-profit organization, and ceased to exist as a program under a larger non-profit. I continued to serve as an active Board member until this year (2011) when I stepped down and assumed the role of emeritus board member. I have nothing but good things to say about the organization, it's mission, it's impact and it's leadership.

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

Witnessing a volunter trainee develop into a highly skilled peer counselor; Seeing first hand how peer counselors have the ability to connect to a caller, identify the problem, provide much needed empathic support, and assist the caller in identifying a solution and plan of action. Observing the impact that outreach and community awareness campaigns have on the number of callers accessing the hotline.

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

I would replicate the model and make it available in every state in the country.

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