Belfast Telegraph

Samaritans launch plan for the next three years

By Harriet Crawford

The Samaritans have launched their strategic action plan which will shape the charity's work here for the next three years.

And the First Minister and Deputy First Ministers have both thrown their weight behind the organisation, which supports people in distress.

As well as its 24-hour helpline, the Samaritans has eight branches in Northern Ireland - relying upon 850 volunteers to help deliver this local support.

First Minister Peter Robinson emphasised the "excellent" work Samaritans do to increase awareness of issues around suicide and depression.

Mr Robinson said: "Samaritans have been to the fore in providing emotional support for people in crisis since they opened their first branch in Northern Ireland in 1961 and the service provided by Samaritans is much needed and highly valued.

"I cannot commend the work of Samaritans highly enough in looking after the mental wellbeing of our society."

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