TeenLine receives 2,000 calls during the month of December

By Mary Dennehy

TEENLINE Ireland received 2,000 calls from young people during the month of December, with loneliness continuing to be one of the main reasons behind teenagers picking up the phone.

Figures released to The Echo show an increase in the number of calls made to the listening service in December 2018, when 2,000 calls were received compared to 1,200 in December 2017.

TeenLine

TeenLine provide a confidential listening service to young people

Based in the Dominic’s Shopping Centre in Tallaght, TeenLine is a free-phone, confidential listening service for young people who need to talk.

A text service is also available and plans are currently underway to introduce a webchat option to TeenLine’s website in the coming months.

Speaking with The Echo, a spokesperson for TeenLine confirmed 2,000 calls in December, adding that loneliness is still one of the main reasons young people call.

Relationships, bullying and school problems are also some of the reasons why young people call the listening service. 

However, according to TeenLine, many young people call for a chat. 

As the number of calls to the service increases, TeenLine is looking for new volunteers to come on board.

“We currently have around 24 volunteers on the line, but we are looking for new people to sign-up,” the spokesperson said.

“No previous experience is required and full training is given to all volunteers.

Expecting an increase in the number of calls

“We are also expecting an increase in the number of calls coming up to the [exam] mocks, so volunteers are needed.”

TeenLine is currently open for calls from 8pm to 11pm, Monday to Friday.

However, with exams season approaching and a desire to expand the phone line opening hours, a massive call-out for volunteers is being made.

Volunteers, who must be aged over 20, are usually asked to cover one or two nights a week.

The charity is also hoping to launch a new webchat aspect to its website in the coming months, after feedback from teenagers.

TeenLine was established by Tallaght mother Maureen Bolger in 2003 following the loss of her son Darren to suicide.

Maureen saw the need for a confidential service to help teenagers and young adults who may feel isolated, troubled or lonely.

The listening service is currently open from 8pm to 11pm, Monday to Fridays.

Call TeenLine Ireland on 1800 833 634.

Anybody interested in volunteering or fundraising for the charity is encouraged to call the TeenLine office on 4622122 or visit www.teenline.ie

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