The holiday season, which is so loaded with high expectations and wishes and memories, can be stressful for anybody. But it can be especially challenging for persons required to register and for their loved ones. Supervision rules, housing and proximity restrictions, stigma, rejection… all can be major stressors at this time of year.
NARSOL offered, for the first time, a fully staffed helpline on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. When we put out a call for volunteers, the response was overwhelming! We had to expand the available slots, and they were all filled in less than 48 hours. These volunteers all have intimate knowledge of what being on the registry is like and how difficult holidays can be, and they were happy to “be there” for anyone who needed a listening ear.
The holiday helpline was open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. eastern time on both December 24 and December 25.
Relatively speaking, the calls were few. We hope that this means that the level of loneliness and depression was low, which is certainly a good thing.
Even with the smallish turnout, we believe the helpline has been a success, especially because so many volunteers came out and enthusiastically got the training and filled what we all know is a need. NARSOL is so appreciative to our wonderful supporters. These men and women gave of their time and of their hearts, and that is the true spirit of Christmas.