LIFELINE PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICES

PRINCIPLES

1.The primary aim of LIFELINE is to be available at any hour of the day or night to offer emotional support to those passing through personal crises and in imminent danger of taking their own lives.

2. Lifeline Volunteers seek to alleviate human misery, loneliness, despair and depression by listening to and befriending persons, who feel that they have no one else to turn to who would understand and accept them.

3. A Caller does not lose the freedom to make his own decisions including the decision to take his own life and is free to break contact at any time.

4. The fact that a person has asked for the help of a Volunteer together with everything he has said is completely confidential within LIFELINE unless permission is freely given by the Caller for all or part of such information to be communicated to someone outside LIFELINE. A Volunteer is not permitted to accept confidences if a condition is imposed that not even the Coordinator of LIFELINE is to be informed.

5. Volunteers in offering emotional support to Callers will be guided and actively supported by other experienced volunteers who will also as reasonably practical have the advice when required of professional consultants.

6. In appropriate cases Callers will be invited to consider seeking professional help in such fields as medicine and social work and material help from other agencies.

7. Volunteers are forbidden to impose their own convictions or to influence Callers in regard to politics, philosophy or religion.

PRACTICES

1. Volunteers are carefully selected and prepared by LIFELINE.

2. Volunteers aim to be available at all hours to Callers (day and night) and may be contacted by telephone or other means of communication or by visiting the Centre and Callers may choose whether or not to give a personal name.

3. When a Caller is believed to be in danger of suicidal action the Volunteer is particularly encouraged to ask the Caller’s permission for contact to be maintained during the crisis.

4. Lifeline offers long tem befriending of Callers where appropriate whilst recognizing that the Coordinator may from time to time set limits.

5. Volunteers listen to those concerned about the welfare of other persons and if satisfied that the third person is despairing, depressed or suicidal may discreetly offer emotional support to that third person.

6. Volunteers are normally known to Callers by only a first name and contacts by Callers shall be made only through the LIFELINE centre.

7. LIFELINE is managed by a properly constituted Council of Management which is elected.

We will help save a soul but we will not tell a soul

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