While National Telephone Day, April 25, celebrates the remarkable invention that many people now carry with them on a daily basis, staff and volunteers at Teen Lifeline are urging anyone who knows a teen to “Connect with Care” this fourth Tuesday in April through a phone call or text.

Each year, the free, confidential Teen Lifeline crisis hotline, which is staffed by volunteer teen peer counselors, experiences an average 10 percent increase in calls during the months between spring break and the end of the school year.

“Connection, family support and community support are all preventive factors that decrease the risk of suicide for our youth,” said Nikki Kontz, clinical director at the nonprofit Teen Lifeline. “There’s no better way to celebrate National Telephone Day than to use your phone for its best possible purpose — to connect with the teens you know and possibly save a life.”

The importance of connecting with teens is especially poignant as data released in February from the most recent “Youth Risk Behavior Survey” by the Centers for Disease Control show 42 percent of teens reported experiencing persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness during 2021. The same survey revealed a 60 percent increase from 2011 to 2021 in the number of adolescent girls who made a suicide plan.

Teens can place a call 24/7 or text during certain hours to 602-248-8336 (TEEN) if they need to talk. Additional resources and information can be found at www.teenlifeline.org.


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