If you or someone you love is experiencing a crisis situation, there are a number of hotlines available for immediate assistance and emotional support around the world. For those who feel alone and without hope, crisis and prevention hotlines offer an immediate, caring presence. Although a hotline should never take the place of face-to-face counseling or therapy, in an emergency situation a genuine conversation with an empathetic human being immediately available on the other line can make a big difference.
Many are aware that suicide hotlines exist, but there are also lines for other kinds of crises, such as sexual assault and eating disorders, as well as suicide hotlines, especially for certain demographics, such as young people, LGBTQ individuals, college students, and the hearing impaired. There are also a number of hotlines available around the world, so individuals from many different countries and corners of the earth have access to the emotional support they need. Many organizations that run hotlines offer a number of other services as well: transitional housing, educational resources, additional psychological and emotional health support, and basic needs.
Hundreds of thousands of people call crisis hotlines every year, looking for confidential help and comfort during a distressful situation, and there is no shame in reaching out for help when you’re feeling desperate and alone. Here is a list of some of the most frequently used hotlines, many of which operate round-the-clock:
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-784-2433 or 1-800-273-8255
This toll-free, 24-hour lifeline also serves the Veterans Crisis Lifeline and offers assistance for English and Spanish-speaking callers nationwide. A network of over 150 crisis and suicide help centers respond to calls from throughout the U.S.
Hearing and Speech Impaired Lifeline: 1-800-799-4889
This lifeline is especially for individuals in suicide and crisis situations who us TTY and TDD devices, or Telecommunication Devices for the Deaf.
The Trevor Lifeline (Suicide Prevention for LGBTQ Youth): 1-866-488-7386
The Trevor Lifeline is the suicide prevention hotline operated by The Trevor Project, a leading organization for providing crisis and suicide prevention and intervention for LGBTQ youth. The Trevor Project was founded by three filmmakers after they discovered shortly before their short film Trevoraired on HBO, about a homosexual teenage boy who tries to take his own life, that there was not already in existence a hotline specifically for LGBTQ youth contemplating suicide.
Boys Town: 1-800-448-3000
Boys Town is centered in Boys Town, Nebraska and seeks to help strengthen families and save children from dangerous and abusive home situations. Through the support of donors, Boys Town finds foster homes for children who need them, offers resources for families to help them stay together, and reunites children with their families. Boys Town also offers a national, 24/7 crisis hotline for those in suicide crisis situations, as well anyone experiencing physical or sexual abuse, relationship problems, chemical dependency, depression, parenting issues, or problems at school.
Covenant House: 1-800-999-9999
Covenant House is a Christian non-profit organization dedicated to providing basic needs, including transitional housing, and psychological and emotional health resources such as crisis counseling to homeless teens. Covenant House also provides educational opportunities such as job readiness, skills training, and GED preparation. In Canada, Covenant House Toronto and Covenant House Vancouver serve homeless and at-risk youth in those areas; as well, Covenant House has 20 more houses in cities throughout the U.S. and Latin America.
Distress Centres Ontario: Number varies depending on location, see below
Distress Centres Ontario, or DCO, is a networking organization providing mental and emotional health and support services in Ontario and throughout Canada. They offer suicide and crisis prevention hotlines for specific locations, listed here:
Durham County: 905-430-2522 or 1-800-452-0688
Lanark, Leeds, & Greenville Counties: 1-800-465-4442
London & District: 519-667-6711
Niagara Region: 905-688-3711
North Halton: 905-877-1211
Ottawa & Region: 613-238-3311, 613-722-6914, or 1-866-996-0991
Peel Region: 905-278-7208, or for mobile crisis line call 905-278-9036 or 1-800-363-0971
Sarnia and Lambton County: 519-336-3000 or 1-888-347-8737
Toronto: 416-408-4357, or for the Survivor Support Program call 416-595-1716
Waterloo Region: 517-745-1166
Wellington & Duffer in Counties: 519-821-3760 or 1-888-821-3760 for the Distress Line, and 519-821-0140 or 1-877-822-0140 for the Crisis Line.
Windsor and Essex County: 519-256-5000
Crisis Centre for Northern British Columbia: 1-888-562-1214
The Crisis Centre for Northern British Columbia is a non-profit organization that provides emotional support, referral services, and suicide prevention/intervention services to northern British Columbia. In addition to the 24-hour crisis hotline above, the Crisis Centre has additional crisis lines for youth and callers from specific areas of British Columbia, listed below:
- Fraser Lake Hotline: 250-699-6315
- Prince George Hotline: 250-563-1214
- Youth Line: 250-564-8336
Vancouver Island Crisis Society: 1-888-494-3888
The Vancouver Island Crisis Society offers the above 24/7 hotline as well as suicide survivor and bereavement support groups, suicide intervention training workshops, in-school training for teachers and youth, and various training, workshops, and education dedicated to preventing suicide and addressing crisis situations.
The Samaritans: 08457-90-90-90
The Samaritans is a U.K. national organization dedicated to reducing suicide by offering emotional support services such as the above hotline, outreach to high-risk communities and groups, and partnering with other organizations to maximize impact. The organization also performs research to better understand what can be done to help those with suicidal thoughts and experiencing emotional distress. Samaritans is a non-religious organization.
Hafal is Wales’ leading organization for individuals and families dealing with severe mental and emotional health problems.
b-eat is a U.K. charity dedicated to helping people from all walks of life overcome eating disorders. The above number is the adult hotline; the youth hotline is 0845-634-7650.
No Panic: 0808-808-0545
No Panic is an organization that helps those with anxiety and panic disorders, OCD, and other mental health issues, and operates the above hotline for anyone experiencing emotionally distressful situations.
Lifeline Helpline: 0808-808-8000
Lifeline Helpline offers 24/7 counseling services to those living in Northern Ireland experiencing suicidal thoughts or other emotional distress. Lifeline also offers complementary follow-up, in-person appointments and therapy in local areas.
1life is a suicide prevention and crisis hotline available throughout Ireland, also helping those with self-harm issues and experiencing suicide bereavement.
Dublin Rape Crisis Centre: 1800-77-88-88
The Dublin Rape Crisis Centre is dedicated to preventing sexual abuse and rape, and providing resources for recovery and healing for those who have experienced rape or abuse, and operates the above 24-hour hotline.
Console was founded in 2002 to offer suicide prevention and counseling services to Ireland, and has been recognized by the Irish government for its extensive efforts.
Lifeline Australia: 13-11-14
Lifeline Australia offers the above hotline for anyone experiencing emotional distress or a crisis. In addition, the organization works to prevent or help those who have experienced/are experiencing anxiety, abuse, depression, loneliness, stress, and suicidal thoughts, and operates campaigns to promote emotional and psychological health and well-being.
Life-link Samaritans: 0800-72-66-66 or 07-348-0567
Life-link Samaritans operates the above confidential crisis line, as well as counseling appointments on Tuesdays and Thursdays and coffee get-togethers for those dealing with emotional distress in Australia.
Samaritans of Albany, West Australia: 08-98-422776
Samaritans of Albany, West Australia provides the above 24-hour hotline for anyone is West Australia experiencing emotional distress.
The Samaritans, Subiaco: 08-93-81-555
The Samaritans is a West Australian non-profit, non-religious organization whose mission is to prevent suicide. The organization provides the above hotline as well as education and community training services to help inform the public about suicide. In addition to the above number, The Samaritans also offers a youth hotline at 08-9388-2500.
Befrienders International: Find your local hotline at www.befrienders.org
Befrienders International is a worldwide organization that provides emotional support for individuals experiencing suicidal thoughts and/or feelings. The organization hosts an extensive database of suicide and crisis hotlines based on country and region. Befrienders International also offers help for those bereaving suicide, experiencing bullying, contemplating self-harm, or going through emotional difficulty related to sexuality.
International Association For Suicide Prevention: Find your local hotline at http://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/
The International Association For Suicide Prevention, or IASP, offers a number of services around the world meant to reduce instances of suicide. The IASP partners with the World Health Organization, and conducts studies about suicide in relation to geography and culture. The above link leads to an interactive map that can help you find local crisis centers and hotlines for your country or region.
International Suicide Prevention Wiki: Find your local hotline at http://suicideprevention.wikia.com/wiki/International_Suicide_Prevention_Directory
This wiki, originally compiled for the Post Secret smart phone app, has a long list of suicide and crisis intervention/prevention hotlines based on nation and region.
International Rape Crisis Hotlines: Find your local hotline at http://www.ibiblio.org/rcip/internl.html
This site provides links to a number of hotlines organized by nation and region to help those who have suffered from sexual abuse or rape.
*The information given above is for general educational and informational purposes only, and should not be considered professional medical or psychiatric advice. This information is provided as a courtesy to our readers, we don’t have any affiliation with the institutions listed and are not liable for their actions or lack thereof. From time to time phone numbers can change and we will update this file on a steady basis. This page is offered “as is” and we will not take resposablilty if this information is outdated or incorrect.