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Local counselors will soon answer Centre County calls to the National Suicide Prevention line

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline announced a partnership with Centre Helps, a local crisis hotline.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline announced a partnership with Centre Helps, a local crisis hotline. Centre Daily Times, file

Centre Helps will partner with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline starting in October, with the goal of ensuring local counselors are the ones who answer the calls of distressed Centre County residents.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline currently receives about 60 calls a month from Centre County residents. Those calls are routed to call centers outside of Pennsylvania, according to a press release.

With September marking Suicide Prevention Month, however, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline announced a partnership with Centre Helps, a local crisis hotline. Centre Helps will become a call center for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

Now, the calls from Centre County residents will be answered directly and locally, rather than being routed elsewhere.

“Because of this partnership, people who call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline will now be talking to a professionally trained local counselor — someone who has vast knowledge of our area and knows the range of services available to help with their needs,” Leanne Lenz, executive director of Centre Helps, said in a press release. “Localizing this service truly is the best way to help the people of Central Pennsylvania.”

Established in 1972, Centre Helps offers services to individuals in various states of distress for a variety of reasons, from suicidal thoughts to food insecurity. Its hotline is 237-5855.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255.

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