By Elia Nicholson-Nave – Executive Director of KUU-US Crisis Line Services
The holiday season can be a time of rest and family connection for some, but for others it can bring about heightened feelings of loneliness and sadness, remembering relationships that have come and gone and loved ones who have passed on. It may also be a time of financial burden, bringing a sense of hopelessness to those who feel they can't 'keep up.'
For those dealing with financial issues at this time of year, consider giving food gift certificates or an invitation to join you for a meal. This gesture helps provide a sense of belonging to individuals and grows community connections.
Pay attention to those around you who are in need, both emotionally and financially, and offer support where needed. Think about friends and those in your family or extended community who may have experienced loss recently or around this time of the year. On an emotional level, ask yourself, has something occurred recently that could cause a sense of loss or burden? Or are there anniversary dates that this person or family may associate with loss? Could you call or go see them and offer a listening ear?
It is important for people not to feel alone during this time of the year. While businesses, band offices and organizations close for the holiday season, the KUU-US Crisis Line is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This is a First Nations and Aboriginal crisis line by and for First Nations and Aboriginal peoples that services the whole of British Columbia.
The 24 hour KUU-US Crisis Line toll free number is 1-800-588-8717.
KUU-US was originally founded to support First Nations individuals experiencing crisis in Nuu-Chah-Nulth territories. In May, the FNHA partnered with KUU-US to expand the line throughout the province. Crisis line operators listen and provide referrals to both cultural and western support systems and monitor at-risk individuals to help them get through crises, supporting them during their most painful moments.
We can all face difficulties and triggers at any time of the day or night. This is why KUU-US services are available 24 hours a day – so those who are facing crises can get the help they need, when they need it. Help comes in various forms, from a listening, supportive ear, with an opportunity to problem solve, through to a risk assessment to determine the level of help that is needed or the opportunity to have a worker or band member sit with the individual in person if that is wanted.
Emergency situations can involve first responders, but in cases where a third party is brought in, KUU-US can also follow up with the person at risk after an event. The first step is to call the toll-free line.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, call KUU-US Crisis Line.
Adult/Elder line: 250723-4050
Child/Youth line: 250-723-2040
or Toll Free 1-800-588-8717 (1-800-KUU-US-17)
A place to trust, talk and feel.