Christmas influx expected at Youthline

Youthline is preparing for an influx in calls over Christmas as it expects to handle more than 5000 calls from young people needing support.

The service will stay open right through the holiday season.

National spokesman Stephen Bell says not all young people have family and friends they can reach out to.

"I also think that Christmas cheer has an underbelly. Too much, sometimes in some families, alcohol, and the troubles that go with that."

Youthline can be reached by phone on 0800 37 66 33, or there's a free text service via shortcode 234.

- Newstalk ZB

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