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impact report 2014 - helpline

The helpline is often the first time someone connects with Epilepsy Society. It is the only epilepsy helpline in the UK with a Helpline Partnership quality standard mark

This year our helpline team spent 1,650 hours talking to 6,000 people. We connected with 370 more callers...

Year on year more people than ever are reaching out to Epilepsy Society through our telephone helpline.

Christine Brock, helpline manager, describes what the service means to callers: ‘Epilepsy has such an impact on a person’s life, and is something over which some people feel they have no control. One of the most significant emotional issues is the grieving process of what has been lost, and the impact of how others are judging them.

Speaking to the helpline can be the first experience that someone has with Epilepsy Society. We are the voice of the charity. People are not only looking for a helpline but a stronger connection to a particular charity they recognise as being supportive and often a ripple effect can be seen. A person talking to the helpline about epilepsy and expressing feelings impacts not only on the caller but also their wider social circle.’

1,650 hours spent talking to callersWe continue to appraise and improve our helpline to respond to demand. Through our helpline language line we can talk to people in 170 different languages and we are ready to listen every week day from 9am to 4pm and until 8pm on Wednesdays. 

In 2014 our helpline was evaluated to measure its quality and impact. Christine Brock, added: ‘We were pleased that 85% of people phoning for information valued our response. Our helpline is a caller-led service, so a person calling for information, might go on to value what the helpline has to offer in time and emotional support'.

53% of people said that since contacting the helpline they had noticed significant change such as feeling more confident, being more in control, being more knowledgeable, feeling more relaxed, feeling valued and being less anxious.

56% of people valued receiving emotional support, demonstrating that the helpline meets the fundamental need of its callers – who say they do not feel they are understood or listened to elsewhere.

'Some people with epilepsy do find it difficult to trust or have faith in others. Epilepsy takes a lot of getting used to ...'