Exmouth mayor Bill Nash has announced that his chosen charity for the year will be Samaritans of Exeter, Mid & East Devon.

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The organisation, which covers Exmouth, has around 40,000 contacts each year. These come mainly via telephone, but also by email, text, and people calling at the branch.

Volunteers listen to people 24 hours a day, seven days a week, dealing with bereavement, terminal illness, debt, marriage breakdown, chronic depression and psychiatric problems.

Cllr Nash said: “They don’t give advice or judge, but help people to talk whilst listening.

“Samaritans is often associated with suicide prevention. They can’t prevent people from taking their own lives, but is it the case that talking to a trained Samaritan volunteer is sometimes a turning point.

“It costs between £35,000 and £40,000 per annum to run the branch and this is funded entirely by donations and fund-raising by volunteers. I am pleased to be able to choose the Samaritans as my chosen charity for 2014.”

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