16 October 2015 No Comments by The Northern Standard


No one from the Monaghan area is currently working in a volunteer capacity with the Samaritans organisation, its North East Director disclosed at a major mental health conference in Monaghan Town last week.

Casting her eye around the large attendance at the Third Annual National Mental Health Conference on Recovery and Empowerment staged by Monaghan’s Solas Drop In Centre in the Hillgrove Hotel on Friday, Marie McCormack said she was confident there were at least a half-dozen potential Samaritans in the room.

Appealing for volunteers to assist the work of the organisation, she pointed out that nationally Samaritans had dealt with 500,000 phone calls from people in distress last year, but received absolutely no government funding for its service.

“Loneliness is a killer,” she remarked when outlining the nature of the listening service Samaritans offer to those experiencing emotional crisis. Of those who volunteer their services, she said: “The one thing we have in common is the ability to listen with an open heart and mind.”

Ms McCormack, who was accompanied at the conference by Volunteer Shay Connolly, said that the …

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