Shout partnership helping Paragon Skills’ Learners with mental health support

Shout free mental health support text service

Shout partnership helping Paragon Skills’ Learners with mental health support

At Paragon Skills, we hold the mental health of our learners and colleagues of high importance; with the help of Shout and partnering with Paragon Skills, we offer a free mental health text support service that has seen an increased improvement in the mental health of our learners, proving that the service Shout provides has had an extreme benefit to our learners’ mental and emotional health.

Shout is the UK’s first free, confidential text messaging support service for anyone who is struggling, operating 24/7 thanks to its volunteers. Shout launched publicly in May 2019 and since then, has had over 1,000,000 conversations with people who are stressed, anxious, depressed, suicidal or overwhelmed and need immediate support. The most common issues emerging during these conversations are depression (34%), anxiety (32%), relationship (27%), loneliness (18%), self-harm (15%), and suicide (34%). As a digital service, Shout 85258 has become increasingly crucial since Covid-19, standing as one of the few mental health support services able to operate as normal through the pandemic.

Since launching in 2019, Shout has had over 1,800 conversations each and every day, with texters contacting around the clock due to their service being 24/7 so they are there to help and support whatever time of day their texters need. Shout now has over 2,300 trained and active volunteers on hand to chat to and answer texters any time of day.

A positive sense of mental health and wellbeing is crucial to each one of us and there are times when we may all struggle to maintain a positive sense of wellbeing. Our wellbeing can be impacted by external and internal factors; some may struggle with mental health issues such as anxiety and depression. Others may be affected by external factors which can be out of our control, which could mean sudden rising levels of stress caused by anything from the rising cost of living, stressful events like moving home, a car breaking down, or simply just work stress. Whilst both external and internal factors can be managed with support, these are factors that we have no control over and can severely affect our wellbeing. This is why it is so important to reach out for support, many people struggling with their wellbeing find it difficult to reach out to friends and family at these times – this is where services like Shout can help.

At Paragon Skills, supporting the mental health of our learners and colleagues is at the heart of what we do as a provider with the Gold Leaders in Safeguarding award. Paragon’s programmes all have elements of self-study and guided reflection embedded within them to help our learners maintain a positive sense of wellbeing and help to build resilience. There are however times when we all may need direct support or intervention. Our partnership with Shout, a crisis text messaging service provides 24/7 crisis support to anyone that needs it. By texting ‘Pgon’ to 85258, a trained crisis volunteer will introduce themselves, reflect on what you’ve said, and invite you to share at your own pace. You’ll text back and forth, only sharing what you feel comfortable with. By asking questions, listening to you, and responding with support, they will help you sort through your feelings until you both feel you are now in a calm, safe place. You might be provided with some signposting to other services that can provide you with further help so that you can continue to get support.

If you feel that you are struggling with a positive sense of wellbeing or mental health, would like support, and don’t know who to turn to; please text ‘Pgon’ to 85258 to speak with a trained crisis volunteer.

If you would like to learn more about becoming a trained volunteer with Shout, follow the link to their website –

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