The Pietermaritzburg (PMB ) Gay & Lesbian Network has announced that its Gay & Lesbian Helpline number has been upgraded to a Telkom ShareCall number, 0860 33 3331.
The introduction of the ShareCall number forms part of the its strategy to provide a cost effective service and saving to callers, says the Network.
What is ShareCall and how does it work? Callers pay for the local portion of the ShareCall call at normal Telkom local calls (0-50km) rates. This excludes calls from cellphones.
For calls made beyond the local call radius of 50km, the caller still pays the local rate, while the called party (PMB Gay & Lesbian Network) will be liable for the long-distance rate less the minimum charge. This upgraded service now allows callers to save on their telephone calls to the Helpline.
The upgrade was made possible by a grant from the Joint Oxfam Australia HIV & AIDS Program (JOHAP), managed by Oxfam Australia. The grant supports the HIV/AIDS programme of Network.
“We are grateful of the grant and would like to express our appreciation and thanks to JOHAP for their generous support. The grant would bring much relief to callers who may talk for longer in time of need or seeking general information,” said Anthony Waldhausen, Director of the PMB Gay & Lesbian Network.
The ShareCall is linked to the present Helpline number and callers may still call 033-3426500 but will be charged normal rate which costs more than the ShareCall number.
The telephonic Helpline service provides callers with a range of information and advice that is specific to gay and lesbian needs as well as providing supportive counselling and referrals to those grappling with issues related to their sexual orientation.
The new Helpline number is 0860 33 3331 and is in operation from Friday to Sunday between 6PM and 10PM.
Volunteer counsellors, trained by LifeLine are available to assist callers during these times and will provide a respectful and confidential service.