Help Hotline seeks volunteers

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The Help Hotline Crisis Center is there for anyone who needs it, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

But it is also a place to get information on centralized community resources. The agency is looking for new volunteers and is offering training sessions for anyone interested.

Last year, the hotline handled more than 202,000 calls from its four-county service area of Mahoning, Trumbull, Columbiana and Ashtabula. Kathy Grizinski of Help Hotline said the calls ranged from help with utility disconnection, help with housing or help with emotional issues resulting from a death or a breakup.

The volunteer training program lasts six weeks. The agency is looking for people who are non-judgmental, good listeners and who can be caring and compassionate. The training focuses on listening, communication skills, suicide assessment and crisis intervention.

The classes are held 6 to 8 p.m. every Monday for six weeks starting Sept. 9 and running until Oct. 14. The final class is a full day, from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19. The training is followed by six weeks of hands-on, supervised training.

To pre-register for the classes, call 211 and ask for an application. For more information, call Help Hotline at 330-747-2696.

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