I bumped into the Samaritans fundraisers when I came out of Reading train station last weekend. It was just before 9am, and most shops were still closed, but the Samaritans were already getting ready.
The first time I ever paid attention to Samaritans was in 2011, inside Winchester Crown Court.
I was called to do jury service.
Jurors were given support. There was a leaflet informing the jurors that if we needed help, or needed to speak to someone confidentially, we could speak to the charity Samaritans.
“We support anyone in distress, around the clock, through 201 branches across the UK and Republic of Ireland.
We know our service can help people before it’s too late.”
From the website of Samaritans
I didn’t realise I was eligible for jury service, until I received a Jury Summons. I first thought Her Majesty might have made a mistake.
I later realised that as a Commonwealth citizen on the electoral register, I have the same civic duty.
The two weeks in Winchester Crown Court were memorable. We had an upsetting case (aren’t all court cases upsetting?), however I didn’t phone the Samaritans. I went for a good swim each day. I remained strangely quiet for a few weeks. Next time perhaps I’d give the Samaritans a call.