Notes from Nancy & Bob: 100 Million Messages


That’s eight zeros. As of today, March 26, 2019, that’s how many messages of pain and love have been exchanged via Crisis Text Line.

That number represents five and a half years of work. We’re celebrating with lots of cake (and we do mean a LOT of cake, also some waffles).

We’ve learned a ton. For example, our entire model changed in 2015! We pivoted from being a SaaS provider to training our own core of volunteer Crisis Counselors. We’re now the second largest distributed network of active volunteers in the world with over 4600 active in just the last 28 days! And, we’ve learned interesting things about mental health.

We think of this as the beginning. We’ve established a strong product-market fit with an impressive 85% satisfaction rating from texters. Our processes and policies are solid and more than 92% of high-risk texters connecting with a human in under 5 minutes. Our privacy standards and practices are tough and tested.

What’s next?

  • Massive growth. If these first 100M messages took 5 and half years, we project that the next 100M will take 11 months.
  • International expansion. We’re already up and running Canada and the UK. Expect Ireland and Australia to launch this year. Most of Latin America and South Africa in Q1 2020 and we’re actively talking to dozens of other countries.
  • Systems change. So far, we’ve used our massive data corpus to make us faster and more accurate. Now, expect us to help shape policy, research, etc. Expect us to make more noise about trends and learnings. For example, there are ~10 papers we expect to be published in the next 18 months.

How can you help?

If you’re an academic, you can apply to be one of our research fellows.

If you’re involved in your school or community, you can help us spread the word.

If you’re a journalist or policymaker, you can report truth based on crisis trends.

If you’ve got $19 to spare, you can support a texter in crisis by donating.

If you’re looking for a job that moves quickly and makes an impact, you can work with us.

If you’re a caring person over age 18, you can apply to become a Crisis Counselor.

Need to vent?

Text HOME to 741741 to connect with a volunteer Crisis Counselor

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