New Helpline hub will support additional 18,000 people

Posted 19/02/2020

We’re delighted to announce that we’ve received funding to set up a Helpline hub to help more people affected by eating disorders.

Central to Beat’s work is our Helpline, a telephone and digital support service that runs 365 days per year and is currently open 12 – 8pm on weekdays and 4 – 8pm on weekends and bank holidays. People can contact the Helpline by phone, email, one-to-one webchat, and social media direct messaging. We also offer telephone and online peer support.

Through the Helpline, we support sufferers and their loved ones with the wide range of issues they face, including supporting them to get treatment, to understand their illness, and to deal with crises. The Helpline’s priority is to support people to seek and get treatment for their eating disorder as soon as possible. We will support around 30,000 people this year, but there are many thousands more we still need to reach.

In a 2018 survey of 251 family members caring for someone with an eating disorder, carers highlighted a significant need for:

  • Extended Helpline opening times.
  • Greater promotion of the Helpline service.
  • Increased staffing on the Helpline to make the online groups more accessible.

Our plan to meet this demand includes the opening of a London-based Helpline hub, open between 6pm and 10pm every weekday, using existing Beat office space. We expect to provide an additional 26,000 support sessions a year to an estimated 18,000 people through this service once fully operational.

We are now recruiting for two staff members and volunteers, ready to launch the new service from May 2020. To find out more about the available roles, visit our vacancy webpage.