Thunderbirds Charities donates $100,000 to Teen Lifeline

Business News | 8 Sep |

Thunderbirds Charities is donating $100,000 to help Teen Lifeline respond to the continually-growing need for suicide prevention services in the Valley.

Thunderbirds Charities is the charitable giving arm of the Thunderbirds – hosts of the Waste Management Phoenix Open presented by the Ak-Chin Indian Community. The donation will support the lifesaving peer counseling hotline and texting service provided by Teen Lifeline 365 days a year.

“This confidential peer-to-peer crisis hotline/text line is critical in making the difference for thousands of troubled teens seeking support, counseling or resources annually,” said Chance Cozby, President Thunderbirds Charities. “Teen Lifeline enables our youth in crisis a free and confidential way to find help and hope, and we are honored to support this valuable resource.”

In 2018, the Teen Lifeline hotline received more than 23,000 calls and 1,400 text messages from teens needing to talk about a range of issues including suicidal thoughts, depression, trouble at school, and conflict with a significant other or family member.

Demand for Teen Lifeline services has grown substantially during the past three years, with calls to its peer counseling crisis hotline increasing 25 percent since 2016.

“We have one goal at Teen Lifeline: to prevent teen suicide in Arizona,” said Michelle Moorhead, Teen Lifeline executive director. “We’re grateful for this extremely generous donation from Thunderbirds Charities. It will literally help us save lives.”

Trained, volunteer peer counselors between the ages of 15-19 are available by phone or text at (602) 248-8336 (TEEN) daily from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. Calls received during any other time of the day or night are answered by an adult crisis counselor at the Crisis Response Network.

In 2018, more than 90 teens volunteered more than 19,000 hours of their time to staff the Teen Lifeline hotline. Each peer counselor receives a minimum of 72 hours of training before being permitted to respond to hotline callers. Peer counselors are supervised by a master’s level clinician at all times when answering calls and text messages.

In addition to the teen crisis hotline, Teen Lifeline provided prevention education and outreach services that reached more than 330,000 adolescents, parents and educators in 2018.

The donation is Thunderbirds Charities’ 11th donation to Teen Lifeline since 2004, totaling nearly $200,000. It is Thunderbirds Charities largest donation to the teen suicide prevention hotline to date.

Learn more about Teen Lifeline, its mission and the results of the organization’s efforts at teenlifeline.org.

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