Watch: Samaritans outreach programme gets a boost


THE Samaritans outreach programme received a boost this week as the Limerick and Tipperary branch of the organisation launched their new van.

Covering two counties, the group had difficulty reaching out to every community, but with the help of the branch van, Samaritans volunteers will now be able to visit schools, GAA clubs, and community groups among other organisations.

Members of the All-Ireland winning Ladies’ Gaelic Football team and Men’s Senior Hurling team were present at the launch alongside Samaritans volunteers and the West County Hotel Cup.

“One of the biggest issues we’ve had over the years is that yes, there are a lot of people who know who to call when they’re in difficulty i.e. the Samaritans,” said John Downey, Samaritans Limerick and Tipperary.

Mr Downey continued, “But there are a lot more people, because of the stigma around mental health, they don’t know where to go. So rather than waiting for people to call us, what we want to do is get out there in the community and raise awareness. 

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“And if we raise awareness, what should happen, is people will be more inclined to call us, but also people will feel a lot more comfortable talking about mental health, and would approach it in a way people would approach their physical health .”

If you would like to contact Samaritans, their free phone service is available 24 hours at 116123.