Getting Help

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If you are thinking of hurting or killing yourself, please go to a local emergency room, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, or call 9-1-1.

For Non-Emergency Assistance

Anyone can call the Veterinary Social Work helpline, whether you’re an animal-related professional concerned about mental health issues or an animal lover working through pet loss. Depending on the issue, we offer a variety of service options, and can help connect you to resources in your area via telephone or video conference. Any animal-related individual (including veterinary students, veterinary nurses, animal control officers, zoo keepers, wildlife conservationists, shelter and rescue workers, etc) can receive :

  • 3 free sessions for stress, compassion fatigue support and management
  • Psychosocial assessment
  • Referrals for community resources in the person’s area of residence
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The VSW Helpline is available Monday through Friday, 9:00 am – 6:00 pm. If there is no answer, please leave a message and someone with return your call within 24 hours or the next business day. This is not a crisis hotline, so in case of emergency, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or call 9-1-1.

UT Counseling Center

The Counseling Center is the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s primary facility for personal counseling, psycho-therapy, and psychological outreach and consultation services.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The website also provides a chat feature, information about how to get help for a loved one, and special services for veterans and people who are hearing impaired.

Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network

The Tennessee Suicide Prevention Network (TSPN) is a statewide grassroots organization responsible for implementing the Tennessee Strategy for Suicide Prevention and consists of professionals as well as survivors of suicide and suicide attempts. TSPN’s goal is to eliminate the stigma of suicide and reduce the number of suicides across Tennessee.

Mental Health America

Mission: Mental Health America is dedicated to promoting mental health, preventing mental and substance use conditions and achieving victory over mental illnesses and addictions through advocacy, education, research and service.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is the agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that leads public health efforts to advance the behavioral health of the nation. SAMHSA’s mission is to reduce the impact of substance abuse and mental illness on America’s communities.

SAVE. Suicide Awareness Voices of Education

The mission of SAVE is to prevent suicide through public awareness and education, reduce stigma and serve as a resource to those touched by suicide.

Suicide Prevention Resource Center

SPRC is the nation’s only federally supported resource center devoted to advancing the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention. They provide technical assistance, training, and materials to increase the knowledge and expertise of suicide prevention practitioners and other professionals serving people at risk for suicide. They also promote collaboration among a variety of organizations that play a role in developing the field of suicide prevention.

American Association of Suicidology: Suicide Loss Survivors

This page includes information for people who have had loved ones die by suicide, as well as resources for people who have survived a suicide attempt.

TED Talks

  • JD Schramm: Break the Silence for Suicide Attempt Survivors​

    Even when our lives appear fine from the outside, locked within can be a world of quiet suffering, leading some to the decision to end their life. At TEDYou, JD Schramm asks us to break the silence surrounding suicide and suicide attempts, and to create much-needed resources to help people who reclaim their life after escaping death.
  • Thomas Insel: Toward a New Understanding of Mental Illness​

    Today, thanks to better early detection, there are 63% fewer deaths from heart disease than there were just a few decades ago. Thomas Insel, Director of the National Institute of Mental Health, wonders: Could we do the same for depression and schizophrenia? The first step in this new avenue of research, he says, is a crucial reframing: for us to stop thinking about “mental disorders” and start understanding them as “brain disorders.”