History & Awards

2013 All full-time call specialists achieve AIRS Certification (Alliance of Information & Referral Services)
2013 As the co-chair of the county-wide Suicide Prevention Committee, we launch the Contra Costa County Suicide Prevention Strategic Plan.
2012 We become one of six national lines invited to manage the overflow calls for the National Vet Admin. We launched our online crisis chat program.
2011 We launched a successful 1st walkathon “Help, Hope, Walk” attracting 150 participants of all ages and raising $30,000. We were also named one of the winners of Thomson Reuter’s 2011 Community Champion Awards – nominated by, one of our deeply committed volunteer grief counselors.
2010 Six large health care providers collaborate on a project to promote 211 in eastern Contra Costa to people who are newly uninsured. Also, we start three new on-campus support groups for high-risk teenage girls, making a total of four altogether.
2009 We’re awarded Mental Health Services Act funding to expand the multilingual and multicultural capacity of our crisis lines.
2008 We’re one of six crisis centers in the U.S. to be awarded three-year grants from SAMHSA to make follow-up calls to hotline clients (with their consent) who are suicidal.
2007 We publicly launch 211. We also co-sponsor the first suicide prevention conference in Contra Costa County; today it’s the largest local mental health conference of the year.
2005 Long-time Crisis Center volunteer Jim Hernandez is nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Also, a second national suicide is launched (800-273-TALK) with all local calls again routed to us.
2004 Our application is approved to provide 211 phone service in Contra Costa County.
2002 The Contra Costa County Office of Education contracts with us to start operating a 24-hour school violence tipline. Unfortunately, funding ends a year later due to state budget cuts.
2001 We launch an annual fundraising gala that today raises more than $200,000 per year.
2000 We purchase 4,000 square feet of additional office space, doubling our facility.
1999 We begin answering all after-hours elder abuse calls to Adult Protective Services. We also begin accepting calls to a new national suicide hotline (800-SUICIDE). In addition, grief counseling volunteers receive the “Threads of Hope” award from Diablo Magazine.
1997 We begin publishing a phone book-size directory of local health and social services. Also, crisis line volunteers receive Diablo Magazine’s “Threads of Hope” award.
1996 We begin answering the county’s 24-hour homeless hotline.
1993 Our 24-hour crisis lines are certified by the American Association of Suicidology.
1989 We purchase, remodel, and move into our current office space in Walnut Creek.
1983 We begin providing face-to-face counseling and referral services to unemployed workers. The program operates successfully for four years, until government budget cuts cause funding to end.
1979 The county Mental Health Department begins contracting with us to provide 24-hour crisis intervention services. Also, we start a jail counseling program to help inmates deal with incarceration. Despite notable results, the program ends a year later when funding expires.
1976 We begin answering all after-hours child abuse calls to Children’s Protective Services. Also, Leftovers Thrift Shop, a Crisis Center auxiliary, is founded.
1973 We implement our face-to-face grief counseling program. Today it’s one of the largest bereavement services in California.
1969 Board members are recruited, incorporation papers are filed, office space is rented, a staff person is hired, and the Crisis Center is born.
1963 The county Mental Health Association starts a program in which mental health professionals, nurses, and other volunteers answer calls at home from depressed and suicidal people.