North London Samaritans relies entirely on unpaid volunteers to both provide support to callers and run the branch. We currently have around 70 active Listening Volunteers who give their time on a regular, weekly basis. Their primary aim is to offer emotional support to those experiencing feelings of despair and distress, including those which might lead to self-harm or suicide.

It is often these same volunteers who carry out our other activities, such as outreach activities in schools and prisons, promotion and fundraising activities, admin tasks and keeping the Centre clean and tidy.

However, we also have several Support Volunteers who have chosen not to take calls or answer emails but who are still vital to the running of our service. They might help us raise funds, undertake general administration, distribute leaflets to publicise the Samaritans service or a range of other important activities.

Find out more

NOW RECRUITING! We hold regular Information Days throughout the year where you can hear from current members of the branch, find out more about our services and what’s involved when you volunteer for North London Samaritans – because it’s quite a big commitment. Information Days are held at the weekend from 10.00am until around 12.00pm. There is no obligation to volunteer once you have attended an Information Day, so why not come along?

Upcoming Information Days 2017:
Saturday 1st April
Saturday 15thJuly
Saturday 11th November

Please click here to express an interest and we will send you details.

Then what?

To be a Samaritans Listening Volunteer you don’t need special qualifications or knowledge – just a few hours a week, and the ability to listen without judgement to people experiencing suicidal feelings or feelings of distress and despair.

If you are interested in volunteering after you have attended an Information Day, you will be invited to attend a Selection Day. Selection Days are also held at the weekend and normally run from 10.00am to around 4.00pm. This is when we find out more about you and whether you are interested in becoming a Listening Volunteer or a Support volunteer. You will take part in some group activities and have an informal interview with one or two experienced volunteers. Don’t worry, it’s an interesting and enjoyable day and everyone’s in the same boat!

Samaritans initial training and ongoing support

Listening Volunteers have to be thoroughly trained and prepared for their role. Before becoming a Samaritan volunteer you would therefore join an initial training course spanning 5 weeks (one evening per week and two weekend days). Once you entered the branch, you would then work with a mentor and attend additional training workshops at intervals.

In terms of support, volunteers are never left to cope with a difficult call on their own. When they are on the phones and afterwards too, there will always be an experienced volunteer on hand to offer support.


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Shaftesbury Hall appeal

We have a dedicated Just Giving fundraising page for Shaftesbury Hall, http://www.justgiving.com/North-London-Samaritans. To donate please click this link    

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£5 text code

or text SHBP97 £5 to 70070 to donate

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Big Lottery update

Big Lottery funding helps secure our future


NLS has been given a grant of £545,000 by Big Lottery to rebuild Shaftesbury Hall to provide a centre for Samaritans’ volunteers and a new public facility for local people.

The charity now needs help from local businesses, trusts and individuals to raise £110,000 in the next 6 months to complete the project. 

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On July 24 North London Samaritans want you to shush and listen


Samaritans national awareness campaign Talk to Us encourages people from all over the UK to take a few minutes to improve their listening skills by following the charity’s simple SHUSH! listening tips.


Samaritans volunteers will be at Bowes Park Station and Hornsey Station on Monday July 24th handing out SHUSH listening tips and highlighting the support they provide for the community.



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North London Samaritans is a registered charity. Registration no. 270761.