Our Blog

August 2014 – Tech Awards Finalist

BADGE Tech Awards Finalist

Crisis Text Line was recently recognized by The Tech Awards as a finalist for the Nokia Health Award. We are one among five international finalists who have been recognized for an innovative application of technology to combat health-related challenges.

This is an incredible honor for us. We hope that as more people acknowledge the prevalence and depth of young adults’ struggles, the more we can help them by expanding our services and our capabilities.

Jennifer
Communications Associate & Head of Fun, Crisis Text Line

 

August 2014 – One Year and 2.8M Messages Later

One year ago today, Crisis Text Line went from an idea of a few passionate people to a real, 24/7 support line for young people, available at their fingertips. We believed that young people were in dire need of help and that using text message– their preferred means of communication– would be a powerful way to reach them.

One year and 2.8 million messages later, we’ve demonstrated that the model works.  We’ve helped young people in every state in the U.S., and we’re now the largest text-based support service in the country.  For many young people struggling with depression, self harm, suicidal thoughts, and more, we are the first people they’ve reached out to. This past year, counselors dispatched emergency services for over 300 youth who were at imminent risk of dying by suicide.

We’ve been so touched by the feedback youth have given us; they text us with messages like: “Thank you. youve given me hope.” The demand for Crisis Text Line’s services is huge.   Knowing that so many more millions of youth are silently struggling motivates us to take the lessons from this first year and move on an ambitious growth path to ensure that all youth get the help they need.

Thank you for your continued support,

Jen
Executive Director, Crisis Text Line

 

December 2013 –  Moving from an idea to a reality

On August 1st of this year, we launched in beta.  We kept it pretty quiet– limiting our outreach and focusing on ensuring a quality experience for every young person who texted us.   We knew that text message is the #1 method of communication for teens, but we still wanted to test, “If we build it, will they come?”

The message from young people has been clear:  yes, they want help, and the privacy, comfort, and mobility that the medium of text message provides makes a huge difference. Over the past few months, our trained counselors have supported young people in over 10,000 text conversations.  Teens have reached out for support with their struggles with depression, abuse, self harm, suicidal thoughts, and more.  Many of them tell us that they’ve never told anyone else about these struggles before and that our counselors have listened to them “when no one else would.”

We are so thankful for the trust that young people have given us, and we feel ever more urgency to expand the service in order to reach even more young people in need.  2013 was the year of turning this powerful idea into a reality.  2014 will be the year of moving from a successful pilot to nationwide impact.

Your continued support is much appreciated!  If you’d like to make an end-of-year donation to Crisis Text Line, you can donate here.

 

Thursday, August 1, 2013 - Just the beginning…

We’re excited that Crisis Text Line goes live today!  That means that for the first time, teens who need help can get support 24/7 via a medium they already use and trust: text.

Nearly two years ago, our parent organization, DoSomething.org, received an awful text that read, “He won’t stop raping me. Its my dad. He told me not to tell anyone. Are u there?”   That day, our founder Nancy Lublin, the CEO of DoSomething.org, had the idea for Crisis Text Line.   We are tremendously grateful for the help and leadership provided by DoSomething.org staff as well as experts in the field, crisis center staff and volunteers, and other supporters to bring this idea to life.

Today we’re starting in a targeted area, with service focused on Chicago, where local organizations that work with youth will be spreading the word.  Live, trained specialists will respond to teens, whether they need a supportive listener, resources about a specific issue, or help planning how to stay safe and healthy.

We’re going to expand our services to select cities across the country in the coming months with the aim to be a nationwide service in 2014.   If you’d like to support us in these efforts, please email me at jen@crisistextline.org.

This is just the beginning.

Jen, Bob, Chris, Jay, Liz, Chaquana and the rest of the CTL team