Did you know that Safe Harbor runs a 24/7/365 Help Line for domestic violence survivors? This hotline serves as the main entry point for Safe Harbor’s shelter and community services, and also provides referrals, emotional support, and safety planning to survivors, their family and friends, and community members. This line is primarily staffed by college interns specializing in human services’ fields and volunteers with a passion for aiding abuse survivors. After passing rigorous background checks and intensive training, interns and volunteers assist with answering calls to our Help Line, organizing caller files, updating our referral database, and other tasks to support the overall function of the Help Line.
But what is it really like to serve on the Safe Harbor Help Line? See below for some thoughts from current interns:
"Thanks to my internship at Safe Harbor, I have met some truly fantastic people and gotten a glimpse into the non-profit field. Being able to serve in a kind and welcoming environment where I can work closely with my peers and always feel comfortable to express concerns and seek help without feeling judged has been a blessing. It's been incredible getting to know my supervisor, Caroline and the other fellow interns, and collaborating with them to find the best possible arrangement for every client that reaches out for help. Working at Safe Harbor has undoubtedly solidified the importance of teamwork and the idea that every contribution can go a long way." – Karen, Summer 2022 Help Line Intern.
“I was drawn to the Help Line internship because I love helping others. I also thought it would be interesting to learn about how the Help Line works. There’s a lot of things that happen behind the scenes that most people don’t know about when working on the Help Line. I wanted to see what the Help Line team experiences and how they deal with different situations. Working on the Help Line has been a unique experience for me. There are days where we get phone calls nonstop, and there are days where there is only two or three calls. You never really know what to expect when a phone call comes in because everyone’s situation varies. Being an intern on the Help Line has affected me both personally and professionally. It has affected me personally by making me feel a sense of happiness knowing that I was there for someone that was going through a difficult time. This internship has helped me professionally by teaching me skills that I can apply to my future career." – Brandi, Summer 2022 Help Line Intern.
"As an aspiring clinical psychologist, I was immediately drawn to Safe Harbor’s service mission. Not only does the organization strive to help people of all backgrounds regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, religion, disability, or social class; but they also recognize how one’s background creates certain obstacles and impacts how one heals. Not only have I grown professionally by understanding the structure of nonprofits and how they work with their local resources, but I have also learned so much by listening to the stories of many resilient women. Their bravery and determination to help themselves and their families not only makes me reassess my priorities, but it opens my eyes to many issues that individuals leaving DV situations have to endure. Additionally, my favorite aspect of working with Safe Harbor thus far is their emphasis on the mental health of their employees. The SH team recognizes that you are unable to help others if you are unable to take care of yourself, and I can feel that care and love from the staff every day. This internship not only teaches me the importance of regular self-care when working a mentally demanding job, but it also shows me the kind of community I would hope to be surrounded by in my future career." – Casey, Summer 2022 Help Line Intern.
If these stories have inspired you, please consider applying to be a volunteer or intern on our Help Line. Contact our Volunteer Coordinator, Lisa Nalley, at firstname.lastname@example.org, to learn more about how to get involved.