Yorkshire Times
Weekend Edition
11:06 AM 7th November 2020

Samaritans Volunteer Appeal And New Regional Director Appointment

This year has seen its most challenging times with COVID-19. The pandemic has really highlighted the need for the Samaritans service which was recognised as being an essential service by the Government from the outset.

Samaritans has continued to receive a high volume of calls and each caller needs to be supported when they contact the charity. Samaritans respond to a call for help every seven seconds. The need for Samaritans to be there for their callers is greater than ever.

New Regional Director Appointment

October saw the appointment of a new Regional Director for Yorkshire and Humberside, Michael George. Michael has been heavily involved in Samaritans as a volunteer, and also as Branch Director at Huddersfield Branch.

Michael told us,

“Leading Samaritans in Yorkshire and Humberside is such a privilege. I am a volunteer like everyone you speak to at Samaritans, it is great to work with such motivated, caring people.” But Michael made the point that Samaritans needs more volunteers, “I really want Samaritans to grow, the more volunteers join us, the better we can support people all over Yorkshire.”

Samaritans is always looking for new volunteers to join, and with Christmas time just around the corner, a time which many people find difficult, the need for volunteers is all the more pressing.

Throughout the pandemic, Samaritans has adapted the way in which it carries out the recruitment process - which has now moved to an online platform. The charity is extremely conscious of implementing safe working environments, including social distancing measures for volunteers, whilst keeping the service running for their callers.

Listening volunteer Laura
Listening volunteer Laura
Michael thanked the volunteers saying:

“Our volunteers have kept going into our branches throughout the pandemic, to keep our vital service going. They have been amazing!”

Whilst branches are currently unable to offer a face to face service, Samaritans are still providing a listening service over the phone and by email to callers.

Volunteer appeal

Samaritans is reaching out to anyone who may be interested in volunteering with them. Every call answered is a chance to help someone turn their life around.

Laura has been a listening volunteer for Samaritans for just over three years. Laura told us why she volunteers for Samaritans:

“Being a listening volunteer is extremely fulfilling. I find no one call is ever the same. I have learnt some extremely valuable listening skills through being a listening volunteer that help me manage conversations in day to day life. It’s a privilege that a caller can confide in me. By being there for a caller listening at the other end of the phone – that can make a difference to a caller’s life.”

Would you like to volunteer for Samaritans and become a listening volunteer?

If becoming a listening volunteer for Samaritans is something that you would be interested in, you can start by reading through all of the information on how to become a listening volunteer at

Once you have completed the online application, you will be contacted to arrange an online interview.

All training has now been moved online due to the pandemic, with training delivered by volunteers who deliver the service. New Samaritans are then paired with a mentor and given lots of support.

Becoming a listening volunteer not for you? Don’t worry, there are other ways to help…

If becoming a listening volunteer is perhaps not for you, maybe you would like to become a support volunteer. You could help a branch raise money or promote itself, organise an event, keep the computers working, or help in one of the shops.

If becoming a Samaritans support volunteer is something that would be of interest to you, you can apply and find out more information at