Hope and Healing through NEDIC's Helpline
Lindsy first heard of the National Eating Disorder Information Centre (NEDIC) seven years ago when she was recovering from her own history of disordered eating. She was able to experience first-hand the support and services that NEDIC is able to offer individuals who are struggling with food and weight preoccupation. With holistic healing and whole body acceptance in mind, she went on to study kinesiology, fitness and lifestyle management and yoga. Today, Lindsy is in her final year of the Bachelor of Social Work program at Ryerson University and provides direct client support through NEDIC’s toll-free national helpline.
“Every call is different,” says Lindsy. “Yesterday, I had a father call about his teenage daughter. He wanted some guidance on how best to talk to his daughter about her eating disorder. Today, I spoke with a middle-aged woman who has struggled with emotional eating patterns her entire life. Then, there is another woman from Alberta who has recovered from her eating disorder, but calls NEDIC regularly, looking for support in between her counseling sessions.”
NEDIC’s helpline provides a safe and supportive outlet for individuals to share their concerns and questions or seek information or guidance anonymously, without fear of judgment. As a resource centre, NEDIC can help individuals navigate the information available online to make their own informed decisions, send them resources specific to their needs or refer them to one of 800 service providers across Canada.
Some days Lindsy might receive up to 15 calls a day and each call varies in length from 15 minutes to 40 minutes, depending on the client’s needs. Approximately, 25 to 30 percent of the calls are directly from individuals who are struggling with an eating disorder - often around meal times. Another 25 to 30 percent of calls come from friends or family members who are concerned about an individual who they suspect may have an eating disorder. Educators, coaches, counselors and health care providers also call NEDIC for additional information, lesson plans or bulletins that highlight the latest research in the areas of body image, self-esteem and disordered eating.
“The reasons why people may call NEDIC’s helpline will vary,” says Lindsy. “But at the end of the day, everyone who calls is looking for help. They want to know that they are not alone. They need to know that there is hope. We can provide that.”
NEDIC's toll-free national helpline operates Monday to Fridays 9am to 9pm EST. “These hours allow individuals from coast to coast, to call after their regular school day or business day,” says Program Coordinator, Suzanne Phillips.
On Thursday, May 28, NEDIC will be hosting its 4th annual fundraiser, A Taste For Life, at Malaparte, at the TIFF Bell Lightbox on King Street West in Toronto. Tickets are $120 each and include hors d’oeuvres, host bar, silent and live auction, and live music from Candice Sand. All proceeds will directly support the helpline – 1-866-NEDIC-20. For more information, visit: http://nedic.ca/news/a-taste-for-life-2015
Unable to attend but interested in supporting NEDIC’s initiatives? Vist our donation page and see how every dollar makes an impact!