Crisis hotline 1247 now offers psychological first aid
The crisis hotline 1247 of the Emergency Response Centre now offers psychological first aid. Assistance is provided in cooperation with the specialists of the 116 006 victim support crisis hotline of the Social Insurance Board.
‘We know that long-term stress can have devastating effect on our mental health. It is very important to offer people support and guidance on how to look after their mental health and the mental health of others during the ongoing emergency situation,’ said Mari Tikerpuu, Service Manager of the Victim Support Unit of the Social Insurance Board, and added that anyone who is in doubt whether to call or not should most definitely make the call and speak to a specialist.
We also welcome calls from people who are concerned about their loved ones and want to discuss how to provide them with better emotional support. ‘In particular, we wish to be there for first responders, who have to cope with a high work load and being away from their loved ones on a daily basis,’ said Tikerpuu.
‘Almost 18,000 people needing information and support to cope with the emergency have already called the 1247 hotline of the Emergency Response Centre. Our collaboration with the victim support crisis hotline enables us to provide professional support to people who direly need it in this difficult situation. I am very grateful to the victim support team for reaching out to us,’ said Helmer Hallik, Head of the Crisis Management Unit of the Emergency Response Centre.
Cooperation between the two hotlines was established due to the population’s ever-increasing need for psychological support. Although the volunteers of 1247 have already been providing first aid to those in need, cooperation with the specialists of the 116 006 victim support crisis hotline of the Social Insurance Board will enable helping even more people and support first responders to maintain their working capacity and prevent them from burning out.
Psychosocial crisis assistance in Estonia is organised by the Social Insurance Board. Psychological first aid is part of a wider crisis response plan. Psychosocial crisis response activities support the population in psychosocial coping and adaptation during the emergency situation.
The specialists of the Victim Support Department of the Social Insurance Board assist the volunteers of the 1247 crisis hotline and help to answer the calls.
- The 1247 hotline offers psychological first aid to all in need.
- First responders needing support and help to cope with stress are also welcome to call.
- Callers can receive advice 24/7 in Estonian, Russian, and English.
- People who do not wish to or cannot make a call can alternatively receive help through an online chat at www.palunabi.ee