Posted on February 26, 2020 at 1:33 PM by Ashley Mock
One of our priority areas is Stopping Child Abuse Before it Happens. Within the category are programs that connect families to needed services. Included in this category is 211's Helpline. 211 is a 24/7 resource and referral line that residents can call for community resources or if they need to talk over a problem. Additionally, 211 serves as a monitored crisis line. Please find below a story from 211 regarding a crisis they recently encountered.
Kelly was on-duty in the 211 Resource Center when a crisis alert call came through. She immediately picked up the phone and found a scared, depressed, and suicidal teen on the other end. The young girl immediately told Kelly that she had left school early and was standing on top of a bridge with the intention of jumping off to end her life. Kelly immediately thanked the girl for calling her and trusting her with this situation. She engaged the young woman in conversation, asking her about her classes, her friends, and her family. Between sobs, the girl told Kelly that she was being isolated at school after a break-up with her boyfriend. He was telling his friends intimate things about their relationship, and she was embarrassed and being made the laughing stock of the school.
Kelly deescalated the girl’s thoughts of suicide by getting the girl to see how devastated her family would be. She also kept the girl talking about the positive things happening in her life. During the conversation, Kelly was able to secure the girl’s permission to have help called. She gave Kelly her location, and Kelly had a colleague contact local authorities while she stayed on the line with the girl and kept her talking.
Kelly explained that help was on the way, and the teen agreed to a follow-up call. The next day, Kelly contacted the young girl who was at home and was even able to speak to the girl’s mother who thanked Kelly profusely for saving her daughter's life. The mother already had a therapy appointment scheduled for her daughter and was determined they would work through this tough time together.