Our Helpline Service
Womankind’s helpline is a confidential telephone and webchat support service for women in Bristol and the surrounding area. Since the start of the pandemic we have seen an increase in demand for this service and thanks to some amazing donors and fundraisers, we have been able to expand our service to run 10 telephone and six webchat sessions a week. Whilst we may no longer be in lockdown, the demand for our helpline service has never been higher so we are seeking your generous donations to help us to meet women's support needs.
Since the Covid-19 pandemic started there has been a significant increase in women contacting us who are experiencing depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, domestic and sexual abuse, trauma symptoms as a result of childhood abuse, relationship problems, loneliness and social isolation.
In the last year, we have supported 5,285 women through our helpline. This includes telephone, webchat and email.
The importance of the helpline
Our pioneering webchat service, as part of the helpline, is a uniquely accessible mental health service. For some of our younger users, it has been a vital source of support, especially in dealing with suicidal feelings and the impact of sexual violence:
“Every volunteer and staff that knows me have had some contribution to my growth. You’re all like aunties... I can tell you all my secrets and you kick my butt when I need it. Thank you for being here”
The webchat has provided a sense of connection and a non-judgmental space where women have been able to express their struggles and receive support:
“Thank you for your help and support: The webchat helps me feel less isolated: Womankind has given me SO much and it has literally saved my life.”
That's the incredible difference you can make today.
The webchat service is also an accessible and much needed service for Deaf and hard of hearing women; they are more likely than hearing women to experience isolation, mental ill-health and all forms of violence and abuse – meanwhile it is much harder for them to get support as they can’t always pick up the phone to talk.
Shortly before the pandemic hit, Womankind upgraded the technology used to deliver the helpline service. This was a big change but as a result we were able to continue offering our helpline without disruption to the service. At a time when it was needed most, the helpline continued to be there.
If you are able to donate today, your gift will contribute to the running costs of the service and enable us to continue to support vulnerable women.
The service is run by well trained and supervised volunteers. We aim to take on and train 40 new volunteers in a year. Each volunteer completes a comprehensive training programme before answering calls or chats. A donation of £40 could cover the cost of training a new volunteer, without who we would not be able to run our service.
Can you support us?
Can you show your support to women who have experienced violence or abuse, or who are struggling with their mental health, and donate to help us maintain this vital service? Will you make your pledge today, and help ensure our helpline service can run for as long as vulnerable women need our help?
We know how important this service is the women who use it. Can you help another woman today?
“You’ve made more of a difference than you’ll ever know.”