If your New Year’s resolution had something to do with “giving back,” but you haven’t quite decided how to do so, consider volunteering with the New Hope Crisis Center and potentially saving someone’s life.

The organization has been operating from the Tower of Hope on the campus of Christ Cathedral for the last 50 years, offering its round-the-clock counseling services to those who are in crisis.

A program of Catholic Charities of Orange County, the center will begin a free five-week class series (five Saturdays in a row) to teach basic peer counseling skills. The classes begin on Saturday, Jan. 23, and run from 9 a.m. to noon each week.

All classes and volunteer service will take place at the Christ Cathedral Tower of Hope building. This training is for any adult interested in volunteering as a peer counselor on the New Hope hotline. Course topics include active listening, grief counseling, suicide prevention, setting boundaries and how to pray with people who are in pain.

No special work experience or degrees are required. Volunteers need to be good listeners, patient, compassionate and interested in hearing the concerns of others by phone.

For more information, contact Dr. Louise Dunn, Director at 714-620-8810 or

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