PRS CrisisText Connect is the regional crisis textline service providing 24 crisis text to Alexandria City, Arlington County, Loudoun County, Fairfax County, Falls Church City and Prince William County.
Our textline is staffed by volunteer crisis counselors trained in online emotional support, risk assessment and information and referral. Crisis counselors utilize a web-based platform to provide support to our texting community facing a wide variety of issues such as relationship problems, abuse, eating disorders, self-injury, suicidal thoughts and more. Since our launch in June 2014, PRS CrisisText connect has handled over 6,000 textline conversations.
– Learn Skills to help those in crisis
– Find meaning in giving back to the community
– Join an organization dedicated to making a huge impact on suicide prevention
– Work from the comfort of your own home while still making a difference!
What do crisis counselors do?
– Provide online emotional support to those in crisis
– Complete risk assessments for those most vulnerable
– Offer information and referrals to help our community get connected to resources
– Make a difference and be completely amazing!
How do I become a CrisisText Connect Counselor?
Our crisis counselors are diverse! They are students, parents, government employees, Veterans, researchers and more! Our counselors have a wide variety of life experiences, lived experience, abilities and skills.
Step One: Determine if the textline training (30-36 hours) and one 4-Hour textline shift per week for one year fits into your current life schedule. This is a remote volunteer opportunity, but volunteers must be able to have access PRS program centers when necessary. Please review our shift preference needs in the box below to determine a shift that would fit your schedule.
Step Two: Complete the online application here
Step Three: Schedule to speak with one of our awesome textline staffers
Step Four: Complete and pass all 30-36 hours of online training. Sign up and attend ASIST training (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training).
Step Five: Schedule and complete 2 sessions of supervised textline conversations
Step Six: Take your first shift!
WE ALSO REQUIRE THE FOLLOWING:
A clean background check
Have a US Social Security number
Be at least 21 years old
Access to a computer with a secure, reliable Internet connection
A training fee of $100 is required and covers the materials provided to each trainee. The fee is payable at the time of acceptance into the training program.
Please note: helping texters in need may bring up your own feelings and triggers, especially if you have lived experience with any of the issues that our texters are facing. With a support and self-care, these triggers are managed and worked through by many of our crisis counselors, but we recommend that anyone using mental health services discuss this volunteer opportunity with their care provider(s).
OUR TRAINING PROGRAM:
– All of our training can be completed remotely!
– After your interview you’ll be providing access to our online training platform.
– You’ll also be assigned a specific trainer to ask questions, role-play with and prepare over time for your first shift.
– You will be given access to watch live textline conversations occurring real time to observe and learn from.
– After the successful completion of our training program, you’ll be providing with Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training, a 2-day intensive certification training in suicide prevention (multiple dates and times will be provided throughout the year).
AVAILABLE VOLUNTEER SHIFT TIMES:
Below, the blue boxes represent shifts available for new crisis workers. Each shift is 4 hours long and occurs once a week. We are currently recruiting only for these shifts.