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FAQ

Whether you’re a student or a representative from a higher education institution, interested in our listening service or the association’s actions, this FAQ page is here to answer all your questions about Nightline France.

Listening service

What is a Nightline?

A Nightline is an overnight listening service run by students, for students. Inspired by the English Nightlines, our telephone and chat services are open from 9pm to 2:30am Monday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

What happens when I call?

Once you have heard the words, “Hello, Nightline…” the call is completely under your control. You can say as much or as little as you like and discuss any subject you wish. We are here to listen to what you have to say, without any judgement and in total confidentiality.

Is there a time limit to calls?

Each call by phone must finish after one hour and thirty minutes and chat conversations must finish after two hours, if it has not come to an end naturally beforehand. If you like, you can call back immediately afterwards. However, we don’t link calls due to confidentiality, so each call starts from scratch. It is unlikely that you will have the same volunteer if you call back, but don't worry, all our volunteers are trained along the same guidelines and ready to listen.

Can I call a Nightline for free?

Absolutely! Calls to our listening service cost no more than a normal call to a landline, which is normally free for telephones and mobiles in France. 

My call has been put on hold, what should I do?

If your call is being put on hold, it’s because Nightline is receiving a growing number of calls and all of our volunteers are on other calls at the moment. You can try reaching out via chat on our website, or you can call again later (our listening service is open till 2.30am). Thanks for your patience!

My call has been redirected to another Nightline, why is that?

If the Nightline you're trying to reach is not open on that night, or if the volunteers are currently unavailable to take your call, it can be redirected to another Nightline in France. But don't worry, all Nightline France volunteers receive the same training and are able to listen to you in the same way.

Is a chatbot replying to my messages on the website?

Nope! The same volunteers who are trained to actively listen on the phone answer all messages on our chat. We started the chat service because we know it’s hard to speak out loud sometimes and some people don’t have enough privacy to call without anyone overhearing their conversation.

Do I have to be suicidal or depressed to call?

No, not at all. Volunteers are trained to be able to listen to any issue – no problem is too big or too small. You don’t even need a reason to call – if you want to just have a chat, confide in somebody about something on your mind or talk about your day, you can. Some callers don’t speak and just want to know somebody is there, and this is okay too.

I need to talk to someone during the day, what should I do?

Nightline is an overnight service run by students who are not available during the day. If you need to talk to someone outside our opening hours, you can call Fil Santé Jeunes, SOS Amitié or Suicide Ecoute. Either way, don’t stay silent and make sure you reach out to someone if you need.

Nightline volunteers

What happens if I want to talk to a specific volunteer or want to talk specifically to a man or woman?

All our volunteers are trained in the same way and due to the anonymous nature of the service, you cannot ask for a specific volunteer. However, if you would like to speak to another volunteer, you can end the call and call back.What happens if I want to talk to a specific volunteer or want to talk specifically to a man or woman?

Are the volunteers at Nightline trained?

Yes. Nightlines have existed for more than 50 years in Ireland and Great Britain and we follow the same training process as established by these listening services. All volunteers are trained before they begin taking calls, as well as participating in continuous training throughout the year.

Are all volunteers studying psychology in college?

Not at all! The discipline of the student is not taken into consideration during the recruitment process. We think diversity makes our listening service better because you can get support from peers with different backgrounds.

Will the volunteer give me advice?

We cannot give advice to callers as we are a non-directive service. However, we can talk about your situation, your feelings and your options in the hope of helping you find some clarity so that you might be able to make your own choices and feel better.

I want to become a volunteer, how do I proceed?

All you need to do is visit our page Become a volunteer, where you’ll find the form you need to fill out. We’ll get back to you ASAP.

Nightline and I

There’s no Nightline where I live, can I call another city’s Nightline?

We are currently working on opening local Nightlines all over France so that we can provide our services to more students. We hope that we will soon be able to take calls from all students who need us.

I’m still in high school, can I call Nightline?

Our listening service is solely aimed at students who have graduated high school. Our volunteers are not trained to answer calls from middle or high schoolers. If you’re in that position, you can reach out to other services such as Fil Santé Jeunes or SOS Amitié for examples. We’ll be able to help you in a few years!

Can I call if I don’t speak French?

Yes, we have an English speaking line! You’ll find the number to call on your Nightline’s page. To contact the English-speaking chat, you need to be on the English version of the website before clicking the chat button.

Prevention

I’d like to have Nightline come to my university for a mental health action, how do I proceed?

If you think your university could benefit from our mental health actions, or if you want to know more about mental health actions, you can contact our Head of Prevention, Aude-Marie Gauthier. You can find her contact information on our Team page.

You can also visit our dedicated page on this website.

I work in a higher education institution which is interested in the prevention workshops organised by Nightline, how do I find out more?

If you are a teacher or member of a health care team at a higher education institution and you would like to offer one of Nightline’s prevention interventions to your students, please contact our Head of Prevention, Aude-Marie Gauthier. You can find her contact information on our Team page.

You can also visit our dedicated page on this website.

Destigmatisation

I’m an expert or an influencer and I’d like to be interviewed, how do I proceed?

If you’d like to take part in our mental health actions by being interviewed, you can call our content creator, Marion Jacquin. Her contact information can be found on our Team page.

We’re always looking for new experts and influencers who can help explain some mental health concepts to the public on video.

Nightline Directory

I am a higher education institution or a professional structure that offers psychological support to students. What do I need to do to be listed in the Nightline France directory?

In order to be listed on our website, your organisation or institution must offer mental health support - which includes the reception, assessment, guidance or care of students with psychological difficulties - by professionals such as psychologists, psychiatrists, doctors, nurses, guidance counsellors, etc. If this is the case, then simply send your request to annuaire@nightline.fr, specifying the name of your organisation. We look forward to seeing you in the directory soon!

I am a student and I can't find my way around the different structures proposed in the Nightline directory, what should I do?

There are many structures of different sizes that can offer you psychological support. Here is a short summary to help you find your way through the maze of players:

  • University health services (otherwise known as SUMPPS): specific to each university or a group of universities, these are services located on the campuses of the establishments which offer free medical and/or psychological or psychiatric consultations. 
  • The Bureau d'Aide Psychologique Universitaire: public centres that offer free psychological support specifically to students, particularly for medium- and long-term treatment. 
  • Other structures: many associations offer free psychological support to students. The ones listed here all have professional psychologists and/or psychiatrists. 

 

I called one of the structures listed in the directory but nobody answers, what can I do?

First of all, don't get discouraged - if the facilities are overloaded, it's not a sign that you did the wrong thing to call or that you'll never get an answer. Here's how to proceed: 

  • Call several facilities, leaving a voicemail message, and send them emails - you are not spamming, you are just looking for the support you deserve, so don't be afraid to insist!
  • Look at what time it is - facilities tend to respond less around lunchtime so don't hesitate to call in the morning or afternoon. 
  • Look at the national helplines that can offer psychological support - many are open all day. You can find the list, by different themes, on the Psycom website.
  • If it's an emergency, you can go to the psychiatric emergency services in your local hospital: a psychiatrist is always available at any time. And for any immediate psycho-somatic emergency, you should call the SAMU by dialling 15
How did Nightline France choose the structures that appear in its directory?

This directory aims to list psychological support services offered by mental health professionals that are available free of charge to the student population, and are therefore specifically targeted to this population. It is not a directory of all the structures that offer psychological support to adults or young people. To access them, you can refer to the sante.fr website or, if you are aged between 11 and 25, you can refer to the carto santé jeunes.  

I have entered personal data to find a facility, is it kept by Nightline France?

No - no personal data that you enter in our directory is saved or used for internal or external purposes. We do not track the name of your school, the address you have given, your CROUS status or the languages you speak. For more information, you can refer to the "Privacy" page of our website.

I can only find Parisian structures and institutions, why is that?

The initial objective of this project, carried out in partnership with the CROUS of Paris, was to identify the free psychological support available to Parisian students. Obviously, we would like to extend this project to the rest of the French academies in order to offer support as close as possible to each student, and we are actively working on this. We hope to offer this directory everywhere in France very soon!