“Everyone should have someone,” says Mary, Lifeline Sydney & Sutherland crisis support volunteer.
When Mary swapped her corporate career for consulting – and a more flexible schedule – she generously decided to give her time as a volunteer for our Wesley Mission Lifeline Sydney & Sutherland telephone crisis support service.
“I’m very grateful for what I have so I joined the team to give back,” Mary says. “I wanted to have a direct impact and help people.”
Mary has a lot of friends, and she feels the deepest compassion for people battling loneliness.
“If we were not there, who would be there for all those people?” she says. “The worst-case scenario is we’d lose more lives.”
“Some people have no-one; they call us as their connection to a person. Often, they’re completely overwhelmed or they’re in a crisis situation and they’re unable to cope. The worst situation is that they could harm themselves.”
Lately, Mary says more people want to talk about COVID-19 and she has noticed an increase in first-time callers. “People are saying ‘I’ve never had to call before’. There is heightened anxiety, isolation, restrictions, financial upset and career worries. Some people who were already confined had a routine, but their routines have been disrupted and the people who support them aren’t coming.”
“We’re able to lessen their anxiety, to be an ear for them to express themselves without judgement, to vent or cry. It gives them support and validation to know someone’s listening and someone cares. They will tell us ‘thank you for your time’.”
Mary herself is thankful to Wesley Mission supporters who, with our wonderful volunteers, help the Lifeline Sydney & Sutherland service to continue.
Your help lets us walk with people struggling emotionally in these hard times – thank you.