Volunteers at national LGBTI suicide prevention service QLife have been recognised with an award for their tireless work.
Suicide Prevention Australia presented the service with the Community Development Award at their 13th Annual LiFE Awards Night at a dinner in Canberra on July 26.
The award recognises an individual, group or organisation that has increased the suicide prevention capacity of communities through the provision of their services.
QLife is an LGBTI-specific counselling service that in 2013 united five previously separate services around the country: Queensland’s Diverse Voices; Western Australia’s Living Proud; Switchboard VIC; New South Wales’ Twenty10 and the GLCS NSW; and the National LGBTI Health Alliance.
QLife is staffed by hundreds of volunteers who provide nationwide telephone and web chat services to assist tens of thousands of LGBTI people of all ages each year who are experiencing poor mental health, psychological distress, social isolation or discrimination.
“On behalf of QLife’s 300-plus volunteers around Australia, we’re thrilled to have our collective work seen and affirmed,” QLife National Project Manager Stella Topaz said.
“We know that the difference we make to the health and wellbeing of the people who contact us is immediate: they dial the number, or message our webchat, and right away there is a connection and recognition from someone with lived experiences similar to theirs.”
The National LGBTI Health Alliance said the award was an opportunity to thank the countless volunteers who’ve worked in their communities over the last 40 years or more.
“Long before this national project came into being, volunteers at our partner organisations were working tirelessly to provide essential services to their communities,” Alliance chair Susan Ditter said.
“Coming together as a national project we’ve been able to respond effectively to a dramatic increase in demand across Australia.
“I recognise and thank those people who give so much as QLife volunteers and partner organisations to providing such a valued grassroots service.”
QLife operates from 3pm to 12am every day of the year. If you need someone to talk to, call them on 1800 184 527 or visit QLife.org.au.