Distress Centres is a volunteer service-delivered organization and is the oldest suicide prevention agency in Canada. Founded in 1967, Distress Centres dedicated team of volunteers has been providing immediate response 24/7, 365 days a yearDistress Centres is a volunteer service-delivered organization and is the oldest suicide prevention agency in Canada. Founded in 1967, Distress Centres dedicated team of volunteers has been providing impactful, immediate and compassionate telephone – based crisis intervention support and remains committed to creating an emotional safety net for the vulnerable and at-risk in our community.
Through a team of more than 600 crisis responder volunteers, we deliver mental health support services to the community and strive to achieve our vision of “ensuring that every individual in need receives life sustaining emotional support”. As a result, there is a demonstrated history of innovation within Distress Centres that is aligned to developing programs and services that are responsive and that deliver a meaningful difference to the lives of our callers.
Our programs reflect our community partnerships approach and embodies the continuum of care framework in which we operate in:
• 408- Helpline – 24/7 support service;
• Survivor Support Program- for individuals and families in the aftermath of suicide/homicide;
• Community Outreach and Education Program- helps communities rebuild after a traumatic loss event, provides education and skills training,
• Social Reporting and integration of Crisis Response Services;
• PARO Helpline- provides 24/7 emotional first-aid support to medical residents and students, as well as their family members;
• EMS Warm Transfer Line – provides support to high-risk for suicide callers to EMS until emergency services arrive on the scene;
• Crisis Link- the world’s first public/private and not–for-profit partnership transit suicide prevention service in the City of Toronto’s subway system;
• Caller Reassurance Program- out bound calls to isolated, marginalized chronically mentally ill callers, particularly seniors;
• ONTX – online chat and text distress/crisis support targeting youth and young adults;
• CAMH Switch board Warm Transfer Line – provide emotional support to distressed callers to CAMH switchboard.