To quote the old Bell telephone system commercials from years ago: Reach out and touch someone. In this case, a child who needs help with homework or a personal problem, or just a little encouragement. The Phone Friend Program operated by the Association for Supportive Child Care provides a free, bilingual “warm line” that kids ages 5-18 can call after school when they need to talk to someone. And the program needs you.
Volunteers answer calls from one of nine phone lines. The child may ask you for help with those vexing math problems or to play a game of hangman or 20 questions. He or she might want you to read a story over the phone or just to simply listen.
Phone Friend hours are 1 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Monday through Friday at 3910 S. Rural Road, Suite E, in Tempe. After completion of a free orientation and training, volunteers are required to dedicate a minimum of 25 hours to the program; the schedule is flexible.
• A Helping Hand is our weekly spotlight on a volunteer opportunity in the East Valley. Find other ways to help at www.volunteermatch.org.