Ben, the automotive industry charity, regularly sees an increase in demand for support in the winter months and, with Blue Monday fast approaching, has launched a new text service to ensure people who are struggling or in crisis can access free and confidential help any time they need it, day or night.
The text service offers support outside of Ben’s helpline hours (Mon-Fri 8am-8pm), in partnership with Shout. If you need support outside of Ben’s helpline hours, you can simply text the word BEN to 85258. You will then receive four automated messages which will connect you to the next available trained professional who will support you. You will then be able to chat over text about what is troubling you – be it feeling anxious, having relationship issues, experiencing problems with addiction or gambling, feeling lonely, low in mood or depression, dealing with bullying, or experiencing thoughts of self-harm or suicide. Whatever is on your mind, the Ben team is on hand 24/7 to listen and help you to reach a calmer and safer place and figure out a plan for how to move forward.
Rachel Clift, Health & Wellbeing Director at Ben, said: “We are delighted to be launching our text service in advance of Blue Monday as we know this will be a hugely valuable new resource for people who need our help. The fact that people can now contact us and receive support at any time, day or night, means that we can offer potentially life-saving support to our automotive family who may be struggling or in crisis.
“Sometimes people prefer to text rather than speak on the phone, it can be easier to share how we truly feel, to chat discretely if there are others in earshot, or to talk about things that are causing us shame or embarrassment over text rather than having to say them out loud. Our existing webchat during the day and now a dedicated out of hours text support service gives our community another way of accessing vital help and may make a crucial difference to someone who is thinking of harming themselves or taking more drastic action in a time of crisis. We want people to know that we are here, any time, for a judgment-free, confidential chat.”
Between 8pm – 8am you can text BEN to 85258 free and anonymously from all major UK networks – to find out more about Ben’s text support service, visit www.ben.org.uk/get-help/ben-s-text-support-service
Ben can help those who work, or have worked, in the automotive industry and their family dependents. If you would benefit from some support or if someone you know might need their help, please don’t hesitate to get in touch via their free and confidential helpline: 08081 311 333, use the webchat at www.ben.org.uk or text BEN to 58258.