Frequently Asked Questions

What happens when I call 13 11 14?

The first thing you will hear is a welcome message and a list of options, depending on whether you’re seeking crisis support or calling for something else such as information about call costs or volunteering.

If you are seeking crisis support, you may experience a short wait before you are connected to a Lifeline Crisis Supporter. Please stay in the queue and your call will be answered as soon as a Crisis Supporter is available.

The Crisis support Lifeline offers is short term, and centres on providing people with assistance, non-judgemental support and resources in their time of need.

The main aim of crisis support is to help reduce stress and improve the person’s ability to cope with their current situation, as well as with future crises.

Is this a free call?

Calls to Lifeline made from a mobile phone are free. Calls to Lifeline made from a landline are charged at the cost of a local call.


I can’t get through to the 24-hour crisis line. What should I do?

If you are in immediate danger call 000.

You will be placed on hold until a Telephone Crisis Supporter becomes available.

Your call will be answered as soon as possible by the next available crisis supporter. If your call isn’t answered straight away, it means we are experiencing high demand for our service and helping other Australians in need.

Please stay on the line or call back later.


Can I speak to the same crisis supporter I spoke to when I called last week?

It’s unlikely that you will be connected to the same Crisis Supporter. All Lifeline’s Crisis Supporters are trained and supervised in the same way so you should get the same level of support and care no matter who you talk to.

Is crisis support confidential?

All Lifeline staff and volunteers are required to keep caller personal information confidential.

Some details about your call will be collected by the Crisis Supporter. Notes will be taken about things like the date, time and duration of your call, the reason for ringing and the outcome of the call.

Confidentiality of information collected during a call and the anonymity of a caller will be upheld at all times except in cases where:

  1. A caller is at imminent risk of injury or death by suicide
  2. A caller makes specific threats to harm third parties
  3. A caller is at imminent risk of injury or death by another person
  4. There are reasonable grounds for believing that child abuse is occurring and/or where an intervention may be required to ensure a child’s safety.
  5. Situations where there is a legal imperative to provide information
  6. Circumstances where it is necessary to discuss matters related to the call or caller for the purposes of providing the best possible service to the client, including through supervision processes or to ensure the safety and well-being of telephone counsellors.

Wherever possible Lifeline will advise callers of the above limits of confidentiality.

What is a crisis?

A crisis is someone’s personal reaction to an event or experience which they find hard to cope with. It is a very individual response. One person may be deeply affected by an experience or event which has little effect on another person.

Here are a few examples of things which may precipitate a crisis for some people:

  • Relationship breakdown or difficulties
  • Loss (of a loved one, job, home)
  • Physical health issues
  • Caring for another or concern for another’s safety or well-being
  • Violence (including domestic violence) and trauma
  • Pressures from work or study
  • An accident
  • A natural disaster
  • Symptoms of mental illness

Lifeline believes that crisis support can save lives and our Crisis Supporters are here to offer an immediate response when difficulties seem overwhelming.

Is this Christian counselling?

Lifeline provides non-denominational crisis support.