Ever wanted to give back to your community in a meaningful and enriching way? Now is your chance. Volunteers are a vital part of Distress Centres. Every year, volunteers contribute more than 100,000 hours to our 24-hour distress and crisis lines, providing immediate access to help and support.

Under the supervision of professional staff, all volunteers are carefully screened and fully trained prior to taking calls or working with callers, program participants or survivors of loss. Volunteers also receive ongoing professional support and in-service education sessions. Experienced volunteers learn many life and communication skills which enable them to function more effectively in other aspects of their lives.

Our volunteer grief facilitators consist of survivors of loss and non-survivors of loss who receive extensive screening and training. Those with the experience of suicide and/or homicide loss are now at a point where they can give support back to other survivors. Those without the experience of suicide and/or homicide loss bring a rich and diverse background in a variety of social support environments.

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Interested in volunteering?
Please take our quiz to test your listening skills.

Rating (1- Never, 2- Rarely, 3- Sometimes, 4- Most of the time, 5- Always)

1. I am the type of person who encourages others to talk

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
5- Always

2. I enjoy listening to others

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
5- Always

3. I have the same approach when listening to men and women, young and old

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

4. I am interested in listening to people even if they are someone whom I do not know

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

5. I am able to listen from an unbiased perspective, regardless of whether or not I like the person or their ideas

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

6. I tend to seek clarification when I am unsure of the meaning

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
5- Always

7. I tend to ask open ended questions to get the other person to fully explain their ideas

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

8. I listen even though I think I know what will be said-

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

9. I am able to provide full attention when listening to someone

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

10. I listen even though the person’s manner of speaking or choice of words is not the best

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

11. I tend to reserve judgement on someone’s ideas until they are finished

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
5- Always

12. I am able to reflect back what the person has said in order to ensure I have heard correctly

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

13. I consider and evaluate what the speaker is saying

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

14. I encourage the speaker to continue if they hesitate

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

15. I allow the speaker to complete what they are trying to say

1- Never
2- Rarely
3- Sometimes
4- Most of the time
- Always

    Add up how you score as a good listener!

    60 or better: You’re all ears! The message came through loud and clear! 
    50-59: Average. You might be missing some information, but keep at it! 
    49 and lower: There’s interference on the line. This may not be the most appropriate volunteer match.

    PLEASE Scroll down to fill out the appropriate form
    for the volunteer opportunity you'd like to apply TO!

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    Become a 408-HELP Line Responder

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    Become a Caller Reassurance Responder

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    Become a ONTX Responder

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    Become a Survivor of Suicide Loss Grief Facilitator

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    Become a Survivor of Homicide Loss Grief Facilitator

     
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    When I began volunteering at Distress Centres, I never imagined what a positive impact this type of work would have on the lives of others as well as on my own life. Distress Centres has provided me with the opportunity to refine my listening and helping skills, to become a more empathetic and nonjudgmental listener, and to be involved in something that I am truly passionate about. I always look forward to my shifts at Distress Centres, not only because I enjoy the work I do in the phone room, but because the staff members and other volunteers provide such a warm and inviting environment. There aren’t too many places that are filled with such caring and empathetic people in one room! Volunteering for Distress Centres has become more than just a volunteer position for me; it has become part of who I am. Perhaps most importantly, I’ve learned that one phone call can truly make a difference in someone’s life.
    — Alycia - 408 HELP Line Responder
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