Crisis Text Line – The First Text-Based Crisis Intervention Service

The text line is the first text-based crisis intervention service in the United States. When you text BRAVE to 741741, you’ll get connected with a trained Crisis Counselor who will listen and help you de-escalate your situation.

You can have back and forth texting conversations with the Crisis Counselor, but you never have to share anything you don’t want to. A conversation typically ends when both you and the Crisis Counselor feel that you are in a calm, safe place.

Founded in 2013

The non-profit organization Crisis Text Line uses technology to address mental health issues by connecting people with trained volunteer crisis counselors via the medium they prefer, text. Its mission is to help anyone in crisis, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It has helped over 12 million people to date. It is also the only response organization that converses with youth nationally through text. It has received funding from a wide range of sources including the Skoll Foundation, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Scott Cook and Signe Ostby, and Virgin Unite.

Building a community has been a key component of Crisis Text Line from the start. When deciding on a new platform, the team chose Higher Logic Vanilla based on its customizable permissions and community management capabilities. This meant that volunteers could connect and engage earlier in their training and build a sense of belonging. It also allowed them to harness more granular data from conversations.

Supports people in all types of crises

For more than a decade, people in crisis have found hope and help with Crisis Text Line. This nationwide service provides support over the phone or internet via SMS (text messaging) to anyone who needs it. It’s free, anonymous and available 24/7.

Texters talk about a variety of issues, including relationships, depression and suicidal thoughts, isolation and loneliness, self-harm, alcohol and drug abuse, anxiety and stress, eating disorders, bullying, abuse (emotional and physical), gender and sexuality, and third party concerns. Crisis counselors empathize with their texters and are trained not to interrogate or offer advice. Instead, they encourage their texters to identify options and weigh pros and cons.

Volunteers are supported by full-time supervisors who have degrees in counseling, social work, and human services. They are encouraged to take a flexible schedule that allows them to balance their volunteer work, personal life, and career. They also receive training to prepare them to respond to the most severe situations.

Dedicated to reducing stigma

When someone experiences a mental health crisis, they often don’t know how to ask for help. It is important to talk openly about these issues with your loved ones and encourage them to seek treatment if needed. This will help decrease the stigma surrounding mental illness and can prevent individuals from falling through the cracks.

A heartbreaking text from a teenager in distress inspired Nancy Lublin to create Crisis Text Line. This not-for-profit pairs trained Crisis Counselors with tech-forward data science to serve people in need of immediate, empathetic support. They are not for-profit, so you can trust that their sole interest is in your wellbeing.

In this study, researchers analyzed anonymized and de-identified Crisis Text Line CC reports and voluntary texter surveys from conversations initiated by the service between October 12, 2017 and October 11, 2018. The results indicate that the majority of crisis texters felt their CCs were concerned about them, which is consistent with person-centered care.

Text STEVE to 741741 for young people of color

Crisis Text Line offers free, 24/7 mental health support through text message. This service works along with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline to help people work through difficult situations and connect to resources in their area. It is a confidential resource and your safety is paramount, so don’t hesitate to reach out!

Whether you’re dealing with depression, anxiety, self-harm, or any other challenge, this hotline can provide the support you need. The service is staffed by volunteer Crisis Counselors who will listen to your story and offer you resources. They will also check in with you regularly to ensure that you’re safe and coping well.

In addition, the hotline has tailored resources for English and Spanish speakers, sexual assault survivors, youth, and Veterans. In order to talk with a counselor, text HOME or HELLO to 741741. You can also call the phone hotline at 988 Lifeline or chat online. You can even opt-in for LGBTQI+ support by sending AYUDA to 741741. Your conversations with these services are encrypted and anonymous, so they won’t have access to your personal information.