The festive period can be a difficult time for many people for a variety of reasons, and the Vetlife Helpline is available 24/7 over the holidays for all who need to talk – including Christmas day. In this blog, a Helpline volunteer shares their experience.
I volunteered to join the Vetlife Helpline in the early days of the pandemic as I wanted to do something to help support our community in what looked to be challenging times ahead. I work full time as a vet, but I thought it likely that my job would be less busy during lockdown, although this was very far from reality!
I was not just accepted to the Helpline straightaway. I had an interview and extensive training which was really important. It was only when I had successfully completed this process that I was able to start as a Helpline volunteer, just after Easter 2022. I think it should be reassuring to everyone that anyone who volunteers for Helpline has been through this type of training.
We’re here to listen
Although this will be my first Christmas with Vetlife I know what a difficult time Christmas and New Year holidays can be for a wide variety of reasons, both personal and professional. It can of course be a wonderful time of year but it can also be very tough; I’ve been a vet for quite a few years, and I have seen the best and the worst of the holiday season. I think it is important to know that throughout the period, and indeed throughout every day of the year, there will be someone available to speak to by phone or email, 24 hours a day. We are there to listen and provide support at any time and for any reason -whether you want to just tell us how you are feeling, get something off your chest, or share a problem you are experiencing or your concern for another person. It sometimes takes some courage to call us but please rest assured you will receive a warm welcome if you do. All contacts always remain completely confidential.
If you are reading this, I hope you have a wonderful holiday season – but if things are a bit tough, please do get in touch with us at any time.
Vetlife Helpline is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year on: 0303 040 2551 or via anonymous email.