Project information

Face-to-face support for people who are suicidal

The Listening Place supports suicidal people. It uniquely offers free, face-to-face, on-going support, given by well trained volunteers, supported by mental health professionals, by appointment in a warm, caring, and compassionate environment.

January 2019 - December 2019

Charity information: The Listening Place

The Listening Place logo
  • Need


    Suicide is the greatest cause of death amongst men under 45, and all adults under 35. Suicides are not inevitable, and appropriate support for people at times of personal crisis can help prevent people taking their own life. There is a significant gap in the current support of the suicidal between mental health professionals and other charities. The gap is the ability to offer sustained face-to-face support. Many people cannot access anything that might help them with their suicidal feelings.


    The Listening Place provides free, face-to-face, on-going support for anyone who feels that life is no longer worth living. Support that is given by well trained volunteers, supported by mental health professionals. Support that is given in a warm, caring, and empathetic environment, and will continue for a long as it is useful in helping a visitor to cope with their suicidal feelings. Support which is non-judgemental, non-directional, and confidential.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To increase capacity to enable us to give sustained support to a further 150 suicidal visitors.


    » Recruit and train another 48 volunteers to supervise shifts, provide face-to-face support, and help run all aspects of the service.

    What success will look like

    Research tools have been designed by advisors to assess the quality of the support that is delivered. Data systems track visitor information, and analyse suicidal ideation.

    Aim 2

    To ensure that all potential referrers and partners are aware of the increased capacity.


    » Liaise with all potential referrers, including GP’s, psychiatric liaison units, mental health triage services, IAPT service providers, and hospitals.
    » Preparation and distribution of posters and leaflets for all potential referrers, and awareness building presentations and meetings across London.

    What success will look like

    A comprehensive report will compiled each month that demonstrates where referrals originate. A record of all meetings, contacts and presentations with referrers will be kept.

  • Impact


    The project will help deliver vital support for the chronically suicidal. It will fill the gap in currently available support. For the first time suicidal people will be able to find a place that they can discuss their suicidal feelings calmly with the same volunteer, over many months. They will be able to build trust and healthy attachment, whilst talking through their darkest moments. Qualitative and quantitative reports will be used to ensure that the service delivers against objectives.


    The most significant risk is that we have insufficient well trained volunteers to cope with the demand. Mental health professionals have already indicated that they need the service, and that they would like to increase the number of referrals. We are running information events for potential volunteers every fortnight, and training sessions every month (volunteers have eight weeks training). We are attending recruitment events for charities and have started to use social media for volunteers.


    We will keep extensive records of our progress, recording many aspects of the referral process, and the visitor journey. Reports will be circulated every month, and donors will also be welcome to visit us in Pimlico and see what we do at first hand.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £20,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £1,000 IT systems Programming, update, and support
      £1,000 Communications Telephones and texts
      £1,000 Recruitment DBS Checks
      £1,000 Publicity Leaflets and posters
      £16,000 Premises Rental and running costs
  • Background


    The Listening Place is located at Meade Mews in Pimlico, easily accessible with frequent public transport. The premises are critical to the support that is given. It is a quiet haven; a sanctuary of peace. Although the biggest cost of the charity (there are no paid staff) it is vital to delivering a warm, caring, and compassionate place where suicidal people feel safe, and able to talk through their feelings and options.


    Anyone, who for whatever reason feels that life is no longer worth living. As long as they can access our premises, and have suicidal feelings, they will be given support for as long as it is helpful. We are there for anyone that is suicidal. People that cannot access support, people that have finished professional support, people that reject support, people that cannot keep appointments, people that fear stigma or prejudice.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    The Listening Place was conceived by a group of volunteers with considerable experience. They have particular expertise in supporting the suicidal, training volunteers, and liaising with referrers and partners. The service uniquely fills an essential gap in the care of the suicidal, without which there would be a void. Many people would be left to cope on their own, with the increased probability that they would end their life. It is the only charity that offers sustained support.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Paul Jackson

    Paul is the Deputy CEO, a trustee, and supervising volunteer, and will personally manage the project.

    Sarah Anderson CBE

    Sarah is CEO and will be involved in ensuring that The Listening Place delivers to its objectives, with the support of the advisory board.

By providing people who are suicidal with a relationship with someone who can hear their pain, listen to their experiences and support them, TLP provides a life line. TLP offers something unique - the ongoing opportunity to engage and be there for someone who feels like they have no one else.

Dr Sarah Davidson (British Red Cross)