Mental Health America volunteer celebrates 40 years of service

Mental Health America provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention 24/7 with help from volunteers who want to help others in need.

Posted: Nov 22, 2018 6:54 AM

LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — Mental Health America provides crisis intervention and suicide prevention 24/7. This is done in Lafayette with help from volunteers who want to help others in need. One of those volunteers is celebrating a major milestone with Mental Health America this month.

"I've got a talent to be able to talk with people and listen to people," said Crisis Intervention Specialist Kevin Koors. "This is just what I can do and I do it.

Koors doesn't let his talent go to waste. Novemeber marks his 40th anniversary volunteering at Mental Health America's Crisis Center in Lafayette.

"I've had over 1,000 shifts in the 40 years that I've been here," he added.

1,306 shifts to be exact. This converts to about 5,225 hours of volunteer service.

"It doesn't seem like that," Koors said while laughing. "It doesn't seem like more than a couple years since I've been here."

Amy Wood is one of the many crisis intervention specialists Koors has trained.

"He's been a great mentor for me," she said.

Wood started about 10 years ago.

"He's giving some really thoughtfull advice and direction to help the new specialist feel more comfortable in what they're doing," Wood said. "He's such a great person to learn from."

There are about 50 specialists taking calls, but the mission is to double that number.

"We are seven days a week, holidays and all," Wood said. "We do need more volunteer on staff and I would recommend just anybody to give it a try."

MHA could always use more people to help those going through a tough time. Volunteers start at four hours a week, but after 150 hours, you drop down to four hours a month.

"If I need somebody to talk to there are people who are willing to listen to me," said Koors. "I'm willing to provide that same thing to sombody else."

Koors said the crisis center has been a part of most of his adult life. So, he will be taking phone calls as long as he's able.

"Unless I can't do it anymore physically or I move or something like that, I'll probably still be here," Koors said.

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