2017 Fast Facts

On average, our highly trained volunteers and/or staff respond to 240 crisis contacts a day.

We offer 24/7 crisis and 211 phone service in over 200 languages.

We are Calgary’s ONLY 24/7 crisis intervention service.

We provide phone, email and chat support to anyone who needs to talk. We provide text support to youth, as well as youth peer support.

We answer the Family Violence Information Line, SeniorConnect, 403-SENIORS and the Bullying Help Line. The Mobile Response Team is accessed through our crisis line.

We provide free, confidential crisis counselling. Our counsellors are Masters level registered social workers.

530 crisis line and ConnecTeen volunteers gave 54,814 hours in the contact centre in 2017, an increase of 12.7%.

99% of volunteers report using their skills outside of Distress Centre.

Crisis Services

Last year, our highly trained volunteers provided crisis support to 78,574 calls, 5813 chats, 2818 texts and 655 emails. Overall, crisis contacts increased by 8.8% compared to 2016.

99% of users said they would contact Distress Centre again if in crisis.

10.4% of calls on the crisis lines were suicide related and 20.9% of online contacts were suicide related.

Last year we experienced a 53.4% increase in crisis chats.

In 2017, emergency interventions increased by 8.9%. However, only 0.7% of total crisis contacts resulted in emergency interventions and we were able to stabilize 89.2% of contacts that were initially assessed as emergent and urgent. Our goal is always to help people in the least intrusive way possible, and bringing in emergency services is our last resort.


In 2017, our professional counsellors facilitated 2654 counselling sessions, a 17% increase over 2016.

At the end of their last counselling session 98% of our clients said they were able to cope better with their issues.


In 2016, we provided information and referrals to 26,322 calls for a variety of community, government and social services.

99% of callers indicated they would use 211 in the future.

92% of callers reported having better understanding of their needs as a result of the call to 211.

Basic Needs Fund

Distress Centre distributed $136,091 to 86 families and 79 individuals in financial need, a 53% increase in fund distributed. This increase can be attributed to the support of funders, as well as a new collaboration between the Basic Needs Fund and 211.

100% of clients reported they felt respected and treated well while accessing the Basic Needs Fund.

80% of clients reported that their situation have stabilized as a result of the support received.


In 2017, ConnecTeen responded to 5561 contacts: 1035 calls, 1608 chats, 2818 texts and 100 emails, a 115.2% increase compared to 2016.

Texts to ConnecTeen increased by 211% in 2017.

95% of ConnecTeen users reported a stable or reduced level of distress at the end of their chat sessions.

Our Impact Funders: