Who we are
LifeLine Johannesburg provides counselling and connects with people, giving them the tools they need to better handle stress and improve their emotional health. We started out as a telephone counselling service over 40 years ago. But now, we've expanded our service to include face to face sessions and group training interventions that help people deal with issues they face before they become a crisis.
LifeLine Johannesburg is part of a family of 17 such centres countrywide, all operating autonomously in response to local need. Our centres in Norwood, Alexandra and Soweto together are staffed by over 275 highly trained volunteer counsellors, peer educators and victim empowerment supporters who give their time to ensure that we meet the ever-increasing demand for our services.
LifeLine is rooted in its capacity to encourage and enable volunteers to provide a service of caring and offering support to people in distress. There is a powerful sense of altruism and neighbourly love that permeates the fabric of our organisation. The volunteers, on whom LifeLine's operations depend, offer their services because they want to do what LifeLine has to offer to support their community.
The LifeLine centres have a certain fierce sense of independence and autonomy. Perhaps it is because we rely on volunteers and the energy of a few dedicated fulltime staff to start and run the centres, that this resolve remains so powerful. It is one of our greatest strengths, and one that we take great care to preserve.
Few, if any centres, have the luxury of excess funds and resources. It creates a perpetual sense of fighting for survival in the short term. It requires a focus on the immediate challenges and this has bred a strong capacity to respond and live in ways that are immediately practical rather than merely strategic.
The people who work for LifeLine don't just do a job - LifeLiners remain committed because they have a deep sense of wanting to serve others. This has bred an extraordinary capacity to demonstrate empathy, patience and non judgemental attitudes towards the people who are in need of our services.
At LifeLine we truly live our values of tolerance and operating in a non directive and empathetic mode. These virtues permeate everything we do. We work hard to preserve and maintain our values. And it is precisely this conservatism that enables people in distress to trust us and come to us for help when they need it most.