Crisis & Distress Services in Alberta
If you or someone you know needs help, there are many resources across Alberta and Canada offering 24/7 anonymous, confidential, immediate, or short-term interventions for people in crisis or distress.
If you need help or are experiencing thoughts of suicide or self harm, please reach out to a helpline. If you are concerned about your safety in a relationship, consider calling from a friend’s phone, a public phone, or a work phone.
How can I keep myself safe?
If you are having thoughts of suicide or self harm, the ways of keeping yourself safe depend on your unique situation and experience. Here are some considerations:
If you don't have a therapist yet, shop around for one who you could see yourself trusting with your struggles.
If you already have a therapist, you can ask them to create a safety plan with you if you haven't made one yet.
If you are alone, you can engage in activities you enjoy or that keep you busy or distracted (music, tv, phone, outside, pets, art, hobbies).
If you don’t feel safe alone, but aren’t ready to talk, you can call a friend or family member who can help distract you, just by talking or going out or doing something fun.
If you need more help, you can contact someone in your life who you would feel comfortable telling that you are struggling. Let them know what they could do to help, whether it’s listening, helping you with your safety plan, or visiting you.
If you don’t want to tell anyone in your life yet, you can call, text or chat with an anonymous distress line to speak with a trained peer volunteer or counsellor who can help you calm, regulate, reframe, create a safety plan or implement your safety plan, or access other resources and referrals.
If you have a therapist, you can contact them and they’ll respond when they get your message to provide support between sessions or set up an extra session.
If you have access to the means to harm or kill yourself, you can tell someone who can take the means for now or bring you somewhere safe away from them.
If you feel you cannot keep yourself safe, you can call a mobile response or crisis team (see Immediate Risk below) to come to you, or have someone take you to the emergency room. Once there, you might be connected to resources, supports, and professionals who can help you.
How can I help keep someone else safe?
If someone tells you they are having thoughts of suicide or self harm, stay calm. They are reaching out for help, and there are many ways you can support them. Talking about suicide does not make it worse, so don't be afraid to ask questions.
Normalize their experience - many people have suicidal thoughts; it's not wrong or weak. Just try to stay present with them, showing you care and want to help. Don't minimize or deny their struggles, just try to understand their story. Be kind.
Ask if they have a safety plan and how you can help. Offer to listen, visit, or help them call a crisis line. If they have a plan for how to kill themselves and access to lethal means, you can help them remove the lethal means or take the person to a friend's or family's or your own safe place. Non-consensual emergency intervention and hospitalization can increase suicidality, so be thoughtful before you call and try to engage the person in the decision.
If the person feels they cannot keep themselves safe, or you feel they cannot keep themselves safe, you can call a mobile response or crisis team or 911 to come to them (see Immediate Risk below), or offer to take them to the emergency room. Once there, they might be connected to resources, supports, and professionals who can help.
Directory of Alberta Crisis & Distress Resources
Below you'll find a list of resources sorted by location, with some specific sections for certain populations or concerns. Jump to any section using the shortcuts, and click on any title of a resource to visit their website and learn more. If any of the numbers or links are incorrect or out of service, please contact us.
Shortcuts to Crisis and Distress Services:
If you are in immediate risk:
Call 911 for emergencies and immediate danger or visit your nearest Emergency Department
Emergency Department Wait Times for Calgary, Edmonton, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat and Red Deer
PACT is a mobile police crisis response team including a social worker or nurse that offers mental health assessment, support, and/or consultation in crisis situations and is able to arrange urgent psychiatry assessments and referrals as needed. The PACT Team will come to meet someone in a residence or public place and will escort them to hospital for further treatment. To access PACT:
Calgary: Call 14032664357 and request mental health crisis triage
Edmonton: Call 17804242424
Red Deer: Call 14034062505
Grande Prairie: Call 911 and ask for GP PACT Team - say "someone is suicidal"
Lethbridge: Call 911 and ask for PACT Team
Teams are expanding to include St. Paul & area, Airdrie/Cochrane & area, and more
Mobile Response Teams generally include psychologists, social workers, and psychiatric nurses who provide support and stabilization over the phone or come to you in person.
Calgary: Call 14032664357 and request mental health crisis triage/MRT
Lethbridge: Call Crisis Intervention Team Triage line at 14033811116
Medicine Hat: Call 14035293500 (daytime) and ask for Crisis Team (18773032642 after hours)
Canada-Wide Crisis Services
24/7 services to connect with a Crisis Counselor.
Adults text WELLNESS to 741741
Frontline workers text FRONTLINE to 741741
24/7/265 connection to a crisis responder to get help without judgment.
Toll Free Call 18334564566
Text 45645, 2pm – 10pm MT
24/7 anonymous peer support phone service run by trans people for our trans and questioning peers. Call us for any reason, you don’t need to be in crisis to call. Trans Lifeline has a policy against non-consensual active rescue, which means we will not call emergency services or law enforcement without your explicit request – even if you tell us you or someone else is in danger. If you would like support requesting an ambulance or calling 911, we can assist you after informing you about that process and what may be triggered.
Virtual mental health support for Canadians with resources, programs, and counselling.
Call 18665850445 to speak with a counsellor
Alberta-Wide Crisis Services
24/7 phone, text and chat for information and resources
Call 211 - Phone service available in over 170 languages.
Text INFO to 211
Toll Free Call 1-888-482-4696 (Edmonton & Northern Alberta)
Toll Free Call 1-855-266-1605 (Calgary, Central & Southern Alberta)
24/7 for health advice, addiction and mental health, quitting smoking, dementia care, rehabilitation, and nutrition care.
Toll Free Call 18664085465
24/7 anonymous phone support, information and referrals
24/7 confidential service which provides alcohol, tobacco, other drugs and problem gambling support, information and referral to services.
Toll Free Call 18663322322
24/7 anonymous virtual peer support community with trained professionals available for Albertans 16+.
Alberta Supports can help you access more than 30 programs and 120 services for seniors, people with disabilities, job seekers, parents and families, homelessness, financial assistance, abuse, and family violence prevention. Help is available in more than 100 languages.
Call 18776449992 (7:30 am to 8 pm - open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Call 18666445135 (Income Support Contact Centre) 24/7 if you are facing an emergent need for food, medication, shelter, or emergency basic dental services for an assessment.
Affordable legal services in family law, domestic violence, child welfare, immigration, and youth and adult criminal defense. Alberta-wide (Calgary, Edmonton, Fort McMurray, Grande Prairie, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Red Deer, Siksika Nation and Wetaskiwin), Monday – Friday 8:15 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.
Crisis Services Specifically for Youth & Young Adults
24/7 anonymous phone support across Canada for kids, teens and young adults.
Text CONNECT to 686868
Anonymous online crisis & emotional support chat service with a diverse community of trained volunteers for anyone in Canada under 30 years. Open 7pm-1am MT, 365 days a year.
Private youth support with peer support available 3-10pm weekdays and 12-10pm weekends; outside of peer support hours, adult volunteers respond.
24/7 services at the 49th Street Youth Shelter - provides youth who do not have an appropriate place to stay with support in a caring and safe environment. Community Based Programs are also available to support youth, young adults, and families.
Crisis Services Specifically for Indigenous People
24/7 counselling and crisis intervention in English, French, and on request in Cree, Ojibway, and Inuktitut
24/7 emotional and crisis support and referral services for survivors of family experiencing pain or distress as a result of Residential school experience.
Toll Free Call 18669254419
24/7 support line is staffed by Indigenous Health Link staff to provide culturally safe supportive listening, connections to health resources, Indigenous cultural supports, and help with addiction / mental health concerns for First Nations (Status and Non-Status), Métis and Inuit peoples and their families
24/7 crisis line for Indigenous youth throughout Canada and the US.
Calgary & Area Crisis Services
24/7 phone and text crisis services, with phone support in over 200 languages. Short term counselling services available.
Providing treatment and support to children, youth and families with mental health needs including Mobile Family Crisis Support and/or Extended Services.
Call 18005636106/14032999699 (8 a.m. - 11 p.m.)
Text 15873155000 (9 a.m. - 10 p.m.)
Cold Lake & Area Crisis Services
24/7 confidential service, information, resources, and referrals to free services
Toll Free Call 18665940533
Edmonton & Area Crisis Services
24/7 confidential, short-term crisis intervention, emotional support and resources to people in crisis or distress, and to family, friends and caregivers of people in crisis.
Northern Alberta Rural Distress Line Call 18002327288
24/7 care for adults needing access to addiction and mental health services in Edmonton.
Walk In: 10959 102 St NW Edmonton
24/7 all ages phone where the 2SLGBTQIA+ community can connect with supports and referrals free of judgement or stigma.
24/7 crisis line for parents, caregivers, and families in need with access to a 24/7 crisis prevention shelter for children to stay up to 72 hours.
Fort McMurray & Area Crisis Services
24/7 crisis line from a society for crisis prevention in northeastern Alberta
Lethbridge & Area Crisis Services
24/7 phone support for people in crisis or distress and require support, intervention, information and referral services.
Toll Free Call 18887872880
St. Paul & Area Crisis Services
24/7 crisis and support line
Toll Free Call 18002633045
Whitecourt & Area Crisis Services
24/7 crisis line with counselling, support, and education
Toll Free Call 18004674049
Sexual Assault Crisis Services
Available 7 days a week, 9am-9pm in over 200 languages.
9am - 9pm support and information available for all Albertans. CCASA is the primary sexual harassment, sexual abuse and sexual assault crisis, counselling and education service provider for Calgary and the surrounding areas.
24/7 specialized care to individuals who have been sexually assaulted within the past 7 days, including medical treatment with or without police involvement.
24/7 helpline with anonymous support, information and referrals for anyone affected by sexual violence. CASASC offers a 24-hour Sexual Assault Response Team (SART), a collaborative partnership between CASASC and the Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre.
Toll Free Call or Text 18669561099
9am to 9pm support and information line for anyone who has experienced sexual assault or abuse, as well as to those who are supporting anyone impacted by it.
Abuse & Family Violence Crisis Services
24/7 get help to find a shelter or speak with someone at a shelter near you.
24/7 support in multiple languages if you, or children you know, are being neglected, abused or sexually exploited. If you believe a child is at risk, you must report it. Callers can remain anonymous.
24/7 helpline if you or someone you know is experiencing bullying or abuse.
24/7 support, information or referrals for family violence or domestic violence in over 170 languages.
Call or Text 3101818
24/7 support to connect you to resources, services, and referrals in over 170 languages.
24/7 confidential, multilingual service to connect victims and survivors with social services, law enforcement, and emergency services, as well as receive tips from the public.
Online resource with clickable map for women and children seeking safety from violence and abuse. Many shelters and transition houses have policies that explicitly welcome members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community, and some welcome men, including the Strathmore Shelter (see below).
24/7 crisis line. All Wheatland Crisis Society shelter and mental health services are accessible to men, women and anyone within the LGBTQ+ community.
Toll Free Call 18779346634
24/7 access to emotional support, resources, and inquiries for people all over Southern Alberta.
Call 14032230483, Collect Calls Accepted
24/7 crisis line for women at risk of or experiencing domestic violence.
Elder Abuse Crisis Services
24-hour, toll-free helpline for Elders to access information and resources
Located in the Kerby Centre - to make a report or get information
24/7 confidential, short-term crisis intervention, emotional support, referrals and resources to those who are experiencing or concerned about someone else experiencing seniors’ abuse.
24/7 support, referrals, resources, information and crisis intervention for seniors.
Toll Free Call 18774542580
24/7 confidential telephone line available to Strathcona County seniors experiencing abuse and those concerned for the well-being of a senior. Support, referrals, and information are provided.
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