Samaritans, Inc. -- Boston and Framingham Branches

“You have kept me alive and
kept me going – just by listening”

-- Anonymous Caller

Roberta Hurtig, Executive Director
Ron White, Director, Programs & Services, Boston
Eileen Davis, Director, Framingham Site

Main Address:
141 Tremont Ave.
Boston, MA 02111

Business phone:
(617) 536-2460

235 Walnut Street
Framingham, MA 01702

Business phone:
(508) 872-1780

(617) 247-0220
(508) 875-4500
(800) 252-TEEN - Teenline
(877) 870-HOPE - State-wide



Samaritans, Inc. serves the greater Boston and Metrowest communities in Massachusetts. A non-denominational, not-for-profit volunteer organization is dedicated to reducing the incidence of suicide by befriending individuals in crisis and educating the community about effective prevention strategies, Samaritans, Inc. serves more than 100,000 people each year. The services provided focus on suicide prevention, intervention and postvention. Our life saving services are possible because of the help each year of more than 400 volunteers - 100 of them teens.

Work and Role of Volunteers:
Samaritans' volunteers come from all walks of life: they are working people, students, professionals; they are teens (15 years and older) and they are retirees; they come from a variety of cultural, educational, and religious backgrounds. While they do not necessarily share any particular prior experience or training, Samaritans share a deep respect for human life and a desire to reach out to those in pain. Samaritans build on these in an extensive training course, learning the skills necessary in work as a telephone befriender. Most befrienders find that their work quickly becomes an important part of their life. Few things can be as rewarding as knowing that you were there when someone needed you most. Volunteers are also critical in providing support to those who have lost loved ones to suicide. They facilitate our support groups and visit in teams the homes of those who request emotional support. Befriending on our helplines or as a member of our Grief Support Services isn't for everyone, but there are lots of other ways to help Samaritans accomplish our mission. We are always looking for committed volunteers to help out on events, assist with administrative tasks, or contribute in other ways.

24 Hour Helpline: The Samaritans provides a free and confidential 24-hour phone befriending line: 617.247.0220 or 508.875.4500. Or you can reach us toll-free at the Massachusetts Statewide Samaritans toll-free helpline 877.870.HOPE. This unique service, which is staffed by trained volunteers from locations in Boston and Framingham, provides unconditional and non-judgemental support to those who are alone, depressed or in crisis. Whatever the challenge or struggle, anyone who is suffering can find at The Samaritans a caring, empathetic ear, eager to listen and understand.

Samariteens: Samariteens is a special part of our befriending service dedicated to assisting teens in despair. This help line, 800.252.TEEN(8336), is free, confidential and staffed by teenage volunteers who are trained to be compassionate and supportive listeners. Samariteens provides peer support and understanding to those facing the particular challenges of adolescence. It is staffed on weekdays between 3 pm - 9pm and on weekends between 9 am - 9 pm by teens. Outside these hours, the line is answered by adult volunteers.

Grief Support Services: Samaritans offers peer support services to those who have lost a loved one to suicide, including our SafePlace support groups in communities throughout greater Boston and Metrowest, and visits by trained Survivor to Survivor Network Volunteers. Samaritans Grief Support Services provide places to talk, to be silent, to listen, to grieve, and to share.

Community Education and Outreach: Education is an important and effective suicide prevention tool. Through our education and outreach program, Samaritans provides education and training on identifying those at risk for suicide and suicide prevention strategies. We are available to train schools, professional groups, civic, religious and social organizations. In an engaging two to four hour workshop, participants learn important information about suicide prevention, as well as the basic concept and skills of befriending. As our efforts to build community awareness about suicide, suicide prevention and Samaritans’ services grow, we are more and more often called upon to provide assistance, support and counsel in the aftermath of a suicide. Our postvention program trains teachers and other adults who work with youth with a combination of previous tested crisis curricula and Samaritans’ befriending techniques.

Lifeline - Suicide Prevention & Intervention: The Samaritans facilitates Lifeline, a unique suicide prevention and intervention program, in selected Eastern Massachusetts correctional facilities. Through Lifeline, volunteers provide face-to-face befriending to fellow inmates and detainees who have expressed feelings of despair and isolation, or who may have signaled in some way that they are at risk of suicide.

- Samaritans International, the American Association of Suicidology and Contact USA.
- Certified by Contact USA and participants in the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline network answering calls generated within Massachusetts to this nationally publicized number.
- Members of the Massachusetts Coalition for Suicide Prevention, serving on their Stewardship Committee.
- We participate with other organizations within the Metrowest communities of Massachusetts under a SAMSHA funded grant to make outbound befriending calls to older adults.

Hotline and Program contact information:
To learn more about our helplines please contact Ron White in Boston (617) 536-2460 or or Eileen Davis in Framingham (508) 872-1780 or

To learn more about our Grief Support Services or Lifeline programs please contact Kim Kates at (617) 536-2460 or

To learn more about our community education and outreach programs please contact Ron White at (617) 536-2460 or

To learn about other volunteer opportunities or to learn more about our overall organization, please contact