The National Youth Support Hotline is scheduled to go live on August 2.
The hotline is intended to provide first line counselling, referrals and psychological support to help vulnerable individuals past challenges such as stress, distress, the breakdown of relationships, suicidal ideations.
During the launch on Friday, the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment said the hotline, which can be reached by dialing 539-HELP/539-4357, will have seven active lines to ensure that callers are attended, and a rotating staff of professionally trained crisis response personnel.
Cases which require closer attention will be referred to social agencies that can provide the necessary care.
Minister of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment Charles Griffith said that the significance of the hotline was about empowering young people on island and continuing to be proactive in terms of the delivery of initiatives that they believe will impact the lives of young people.
“Our young people are walking through fires and Government, through this Ministry, is doing every single thing that is possible to extinguish the fires that our young people are walking through; and this whole thing is one such initiative.”
Griffith spoke of the initiative earlier this month at the launch of Babb’s Reading Clinic at the Barbados Community College.
He said deviant behaviour was in the minority, but his ministry was trying interventions like a mentorship programme and the Moving On project in primary schools to provide solutions. (JN)