By providing free emotional support to people who are isolated and feeling fearful, The Help Hub is offering a much needed talking space and access to professional therapists, wherever you live
The Help Hub, a concept that began some weeks ago as a wish to support people in her local community, has grown into a large-scale community initiative for Counsellor Ruth Chaloner, and the many volunteers who are working alongside her.
Ruth’s desire to develop a form of free professional support for community members with mental health challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, began with a focus on her local area in Oxford.
However, after The Guardian heard about the project, and the Today Programme and BBC Radio Two subsequently interviewed Ruth, it became clear that there was a wider need for safe, online, emotional support for people impacted by coronavirus. In response, the project expanded to help people up and down the country.
Today, The Help Hub is up and running, thanks to a lot of dedication and quick working from the voluntary team behind the initiative. As a result, people who are experiencing social isolation, distress and anxiety due to the challenges brought about by COVID-19, can now book a free 20 minute slot to speak with a qualified therapist over the telephone or by video call.
The 20 minute session will enable people to articulate their concerns freely, to someone who is able to professionally hold that space for them, and respond in a helpful way
The Help Hub is also open to anyone who might need the service, with an emphasis on reaching those who are particularly vulnerable or isolated at this time.
Can you help The Help Hub?
Over 570 qualified therapists are already volunteering their time to take calls and chat with individuals who need support. After just a few days of being operational, however, The Help Hub team are sure that the demand will continue to grow at a rapid rate over the coming weeks and months, and will extend to after lockdown lifts.
The Help Hub needs more qualified therapists to support the free community service, so if you are qualified and able to offer three or more hours a week, please contact The Help Hub through their site.