The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration offers free access to mental health crises intervention services 24/7. Although SAMSHA doesn’t directly provide crisis intervention counseling, they offer year-round mental health crisis support by connecting bereaved individuals to appropriate national hotlines, grief counseling service providers, and other local grief-related and trauma-related.
– Search online One of the first places you can start your search is conducting an online investigation for grief support helplines or hotlines in your local area. You’ll find that the top search results yield the national crisis intervention hotlines followed by more localized services. Another thing you might discover is that there’s a breakdown of services by affliction or category. Most hotlines search results come up with suicide prevention hotlines and expand from there. When looking for local and state-specific services, make sure to add your location or geographical area to your search query.
– Call your local hospice provider Hospice providers usually have grief support helplines available to help those suffering through a grief-related crisis. Many, however, aren’t open 24/7, and you’ll either have to wait to connect with someone during regular business hours or reach out to them ahead of time in preparation for such an event. Hospice typically has a list of grief counselors they can refer you to if they don’t offer in-house counseling services. The service is usually accessible to anyone in the community they serve or to their client’s extended family struggling with grief related to their loved one’s illness, anticipated death, or post-loss.
– Check Your Local University Many universities offer free or reduced-cost grief-related support services to their students and members of their communities. Most veterinary schools provide bereavement support to those struggling with grief after pet loss. Schools or teaching facilities where students learn and train to become mental health counselors, psychologists, and psychiatrists also offer their services to individuals willing to trade counseling sessions for student-training opportunities.