Volunteer for Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services
Whether one hour or twenty, the commitment to service that volunteers make are important to Didi Hirsch’s clients and staff. Volunteers are always welcome at Didi Hirsch; they help us achieve our mission to provide quality mental health and substance use services to people in need.
If you are interested in volunteering seasonally or on a case-by-case basis by doing administrative work, teaching classes, facilitating activities, participating in fundraising efforts, or providing childcare, please complete a Volunteer Application and send it to Lorenza Loza (email@example.com) or call (310) 751-5353.
Volunteer for the Suicide Prevention Center
Our Suicide Prevention Center needs your help to staff its 24/7 Crisis Line as a volunteer Crisis Counselor! This role is one of the most intensely rewarding ways to contribute to your community while helping to erase the stigma around suicide and mental health. Many of our volunteers are pursuing careers in the mental health field or considering a career change before applying to graduate school, while others are looking for something meaningful to do in their spare time. Some have been touched by suicide, and others just want to help people in crisis.
- Must be age 18 or older and located in Los Angeles or surrounding counties (Orange, San Bernardino, Riverside, or Ventura)
- Basic computer competency and fluency in English required
- Ability to attend the 6-week training and satisfy all training requirements described below
- Ability to commit to one weekly 4-hour shift on the Crisis Line for 12 months
- Ability to travel to our Century City office location as required
No prior experience in mental health is needed. Due to the nature of our work, we do encourage applicants who have experienced suicide firsthand or through a loved one to seek support first before applying.
Training Requirements: During the COVID-19 pandemic, all training is held online via Zoom and a working camera + microphone are required for all training dates. Our training is time-intensive in order to ensure that our volunteers are ready to serve on the Crisis Line! Trainees are expected to complete all of the following:
- Crisis Line Training: Occurs twice a week for 6 consecutive weeks on Tuesday and Thursday evenings (6-9pm). Trainees learn to facilitate crisis calls, chats, and texts through evidence-based approaches to suicide prevention and role-playing.
- DDH: An 8-10 hour online training for the Disaster Distress Helpline that is completed on the trainee’s own time.
- ASIST: Attendance at a 2-day suicide first aid workshop will be required at a later date (TBD).
Volunteer Commitment: Trainees who successfully pass all training requirements are asked to commit to one weekly 4-hour shift on the Crisis Line for a minimum of 12 months where they take either phone calls or chats/texts. The following are examples of shifts: 8:30AM-12:30PM, 10:30AM-2:30PM, 12:30PM-4:30PM, 2:30PM-6:30PM, 4:30PM-8:30PM, 6:30PM-10:30PM, 8:30PM-12:30AM. However, shift availability fluctuates based on the needs of the Crisis Line. All trainees go through an “apprenticeship” period during their first 3 months on the lines where they are closely monitored and given substantial support.
Volunteer work is mostly remote at this time; however, you may be required to come on-site to our Century City office for orientation and for the first few months of your volunteership. Remote opportunities may become available once a volunteer satisfies their Apprenticeship period.
Application Process: Training cycles are held frequently throughout the year. To obtain more details on upcoming cycles and apply, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (424) 362-2920. Our team will send you application materials and begin the screening process, which includes an initial phone interview and group interview prior to acceptance into the training class. Please note that as this is a competitive volunteership with limited training space, we are unfortunately unable to accept every applicant.
BBS Hours: The Suicide Prevention Center does not offer supervision for intern hours.