The other day I was going about my business, hoping to nab a bargain for the shoes I need to start work when I crossed paths with a charity volunteer. In the past, I would usually stop and listen to what they had to say, usually before politely declining to sign up for direct debit donations. Though recently, the last few times I’ve been stopped, I walk away feel worse than I usually did, usually because the person is over aggressive (in a happy way, not threatening) with their pitch. And because increasingly they kept saying I should be able to afford to donate, even after I explained I had no job. So these days I’ve taken a stance to say a polite but firm ‘no thank you’. Which is what I did and off I went on my journey, bagging my shoes for a grand total of £1.50 (thank you charity shops!).
On my way back, I passed him again and this time he said ‘Hello again’. I decided to tell him ‘sorry, but I have no job or money so I can’t really afford to donate’ and he said that’s fine, he wasn’t looking for direct debit sign ups, could he talk to me about what he was there for. I decided to listen and he told me that the amount of calls The Samaritans receive has increased, to the point where there’s a call every 6 seconds. Unfortunately they don’t have the funds to answer every call, even though they do try their best. They are running a new campaign called Talk To Us, where volunteers will be out on the street, raising awareness for what they do and asking people to text to donate. I did it there and there and continued on my merry way.
I wasn’t going to write a post about this but after seeing all the tweets and photos about the man on the roof of Abercrombie and Fitch in Dublin, I decided I had to make a post. Luckily the man was talked down but I was sickened that people were taking photos of this, like it was some form of entertainment. And I know many other people I follow on Twitter feel the same. I don’t want to go on about this as I already have a post from a while back but there is always a way out, no matter how dark it feels. Please do try to talk to someone, a friend, family, a doctor or even a stranger like the Samaritans.
To text donate to the Samaritans, text SUPPORT to 70080 to donate £4 if you’re in the UK. Sorry Ireland, I don’t have a number for Ireland texts but if you do want to donate or even donate more than £4, you can do so through their website.
The Samaritans are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Check the website for the different ways and numbers to contact them. And if you don’t get through because they are busy, please try again later, it will be well worth it.