Helpline Prepares Volunteer for Future in Medicine

When the Covid-19 pandemic began, Allison Tu was an undergraduate student aspiring to a career in medicine. She did not yet have the training to assist in hospitals or vaccination clinics, but she wanted to pitch in. She turned to Samaritans to support those struggling with pandemic-related isolation and anxiety.

Allison Tu
Helpline volunteer Allison Tu

Allison continued to answer Helpline calls and mentor volunteers over the next two years, including her first year of medical school. Volunteering with Samaritans has helped her become a better, more empathetic listener. “Samaritans has been the most important experience for me in learning how to eventually talk to patients,” she says.

I think it’s so valuable that we have Samaritans because it means there’s always a number people can call.

“You don’t have to be suicidal or have mental illness,” Allison says. “We’re never judging. We just want to be there and support you.”

Volunteer on the Helpline

Be the caring listener someone needs. Volunteer with Samaritans to answer calls on the nationwide 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline.