Super Support: Help at Your Fingertips
The holiday season can be stressful under the best of circumstances, but when dealing with family, personal or health issues, it can become more challenging. The good news is, there are a number of free helplines that are available almost around the clock for a wide variety of concerns.
Here are a just a few of the many caring organizations that are able to assist you or anyone you know that may need extra encouragement:
NATIONAL PARENT HELPLINE
While it’s hugely rewarding to be a parent, the demands can lead to feelings of stress and isolation. Parents Anonymous, Inc., an organization that works to positively impact the wellbeing of families and communities worldwide, offers a helpline to assist those in need. “There are over 149 million parents and caregivers of children and youth in our country today, and at times they feel overwhelmed and in need of someone to listen to them to become empowered to strengthen their family,” says Dr. Lisa Pion-Berlin, ACHT and President and CEO of Parents Anonymous. “Calling or emailing our free National Parent Helpline (1-855-4A PARENT) puts them in touch with a trained Helpline Advocate who will provide emotional support and connection to additional resources as needed.”
LIFELINE FOR VETS
The National Veterans Foundation (www.nvf.org) stands behind their motto of “No one left behind!” by endeavoring to eliminate veteran suicides through veteran-to-veteran crisis counseling and other assistance to help military personnel and their families reintegrate successfully back to civilian life. Lifeline for Vets (888-777-4443) has answered over a quarter of a million calls over the past two decades and continues to expand their presence as demand increases.
ALZHEIMER’S ASSOCIATION HELPLINE
According to the Alzheimer’s Association’s latest figures, approximately 5.7 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s. And the impact of the disease is felt deeply by those closest to them, as well. “No one should face Alzheimer’s disease alone,” says Ruth Drew, MS, LPC and Director of Information and Support Services for the Alzheimer’s Association. “Our free nationwide 24/7 Helpline (800-272-3900) answers more than 300,000 calls each year from Alzheimer’s and other dementia caregivers as well as people living with the disease. Specialists and master’s-level clinicians are available all day, every day to provide answers, referrals, crisis assistance and emotional support.”
According to their mission statement, the American Cancer Society is a “nationwide community-based voluntary health organization dedicated to eliminating cancer as a major health problem by . . . diminishing suffering from cancer, through research, education, advocacy, and service.” ACS offers a 24/7 Cancer Helpline (800-227-2345) that assists with everything from emotional support and education to finding transportation to chemotherapy or a place to stay during treatment that’s far from home.
Started in 2010 by 19-year old college student Alexa Moody (who had struggled with depression as a child), Please Live is focused on youth and young adult mental health challenges. While their programs and services primarily work to address depression, anxiety, and suicide prevention, their website offers an extensive list of free and confidential hotlines that address everything from addiction to spiritual issues and family trauma.
Everyone needs relief and reassurance at times. Spread the word about these helpful resources designed to provide compassionate care on the spot.
KEY DATES IN DECEMBER:
- DECEMBER 2: First Day of Hanukkah
- DECEMBER 7: National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day
- DECEMBER 9: Children’s Day
- DECEMBER 15: Bill of Rights Day
- DECEMBER 25: Christmas Day
- DECEMBER 26: First Day of Kwanzaa
- DECEMBER 31: New Year’s Eve