Today, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge joined the Give Us Shout‘s Crisis Volunteer celebration event at the Troubadour Theatre in London. The event brought together people from across the UK who volunteer around the clock with Shout to support people in crisis.
Shout is one of the UK’s most innovative and pioneering digital mental health support services, making it easier for people in crisis to get help. It is a text messaging service for people in crisis that is free to use, confidential and available 24/7.
Upon arrival, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were welcomed by the Shout UK Team. Shout UK was launched by The Royal Foundation as a legacy of the Heads Together Campaign, after three years of research and planning with a £3 million investment.
It was launched by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Sussex in May 2019. It allows people to open up a text chat with a volunteer working remotely, most likely at home, who has been trained to listen, reassure and guide people.
At the time of launch, Prince William said, “As texting is private and silent, it opens up a whole new way to find help. You can have a conversation anywhere, at any time: at school, at home, anywhere.” About the service, the Duchess of Cambridge said: “It’s able to offer support when it is crucially needed and the opportunity to turn lives around. This really is an important step for those desperately in need.”
The volunteers are supported by clinically-trained supervisors. They need to be over 18, complete 25 hours of online training and commit to between two and four hours volunteering each week. The conversations remain anonymous until the client wants to give away his information or would like to see qualified psychotherapists.
And a few words from William on stage.. pic.twitter.com/01VTrGlJpX
— Rebecca English (@RE_DailyMail) November 12, 2019
BBC Presenter Tina Daheley was hosting the event that recognized the national network of volunteers who put efforts to make a difference to the lives of thousands of vulnerable people across the UK. As volunteers access their shifts from computers in their own homes, this event will be an excellent opportunity for this virtual community to meet and see the scale of the national network they have joined.
The service is powered by the Crisis Text Line. Since the service went live, Shout 85258 Crisis Volunteers have had 145,000 conversations via text with people in crisis, exchanging 6 million messages. Crisis Text Line has been operating in the US since August 2013 and has processed over 100 million messages since inception. It’s founder and CEO Nancy Lublin sits on the board of Shout Crisis Text Line in the UK.
This annual volunteer day is focussed on celebrating the hundreds of trained Crisis Volunteers who operate the 24/7 service taking shifts in their homes across the UK, under clinical supervision. Shout aims to encourage people to reach out for support at an early stage, without fear or shame.
During the visit, the Duke and Duchess received a brief update on the scale and impact of Shout. William and Catherine heard that 75 per cent of people who contact Shout are under 25, and that the most frequent subjects raised in those conversations are suicide (37 per cent), depression (36 per cent), relationships (29 per cent), anxiety (31 per cent), isolation (19 per cent) and self-harm (17 per cent).
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge met people who answered the royal couple’s public appeal to volunteer with the service. An amazing 13,000 people registered an interest with Shout following the appeal and 3,000 enrolled in training. Shout 85258 now has 1,500 Crisis Volunteers active on the platform with more training, graduating and joining the platform each week.
William and Catherine also met mental health campaigners, Shout staff members and supporters. Shout is powered by a team of volunteers who are at the heart of the service. They are trained to create a safe space for people experiencing mental health challenges. The programme is unique with the training and volunteering all done online, under the supervision of qualified clinicians. Working remotely, volunteers are part of a supportive and connected online community of 1,000, with the ambition of boosting that community to 4,000 by the end of the year.
During the event, the Duke and Duchess joined Shout volunteers, who spend approximately 200 hours a year volunteering with Shout, in the theatre to watch a special performance before joining a group photo with volunteers to encourage everyone to spread the word about Shout. If you are in the UK and would like to volunteer then click here.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge meeting Ian Russell, whose daughter Molly took her own life after viewing graphic material on Instagram. pic.twitter.com/nGwDl0mOra
— Richard Palmer (@RoyalReporter) November 12, 2019
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge met Ian Russell, whose daughter Molly took her own life after viewing graphic material on Instagram. William and Catherine pledged their support to the grieving family. Roya Nikka on Twitter reported that “The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge continue to lend their support to the family of Molly Russell, who took her own life at 14 after viewing images of self-harm on social media. Today William and Kate spoke with Molly’s father, Ian, William telling him: “If we can help you in any way, please let us know“.
Speaking at the event Prince William said, “Catherine and I, and Harry and Meghan couldn’t be more proud of what Shout has accomplished. We’re hugely proud and hugely grateful to all of you for being part of this.”
Before leaving, Duchess was presented with a beautiful posy.
For the day, stepping away from her signature style, Duchess of Cambridge opted a very chic and smart look.
Underneath the blazer, she was wearing a white top that looks like her white silk top she wore in December 2018 during Cyprus visit. Thanks to Pranjali Pandey for noticing it.
The new element of today’s look was Joseph Zoom cady slim red pants. (Ided by Emma and Caroline Parr on Twitter). The $515 pants available now for $360 are described as, “slim-fitting Zoom pants from Joseph will anchor an array of looks, from day to night. Presented in a ruby hue, this Italian-made design is shaped with a mid-rise fit and falls into straight legs that slightly taper toward the ankle”.
It looks like Duchess was wearing $35.90 Zara Leather Belt with Buckle.
Catherine was wearing her Gianvito Rossi Piper 85 suede pumps debuted in March 2019 for the first time when she visited Henry Fawcett Children’s Centre.
I will leave you with this lovely photograph of Catherine shared by the Kensington Palace on its Instagram page. Next, we will see Duchess on Friday at the opening of the NOOK.