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Social support and self-efficacy serially mediate the association of strength of identification with text-based crisis support line volunteers' compassion fatigue and compassion satisfaction

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Help-line services provide a vital support to individuals experiencing mental or personal crisis. Recent years has seen a rise in both text-based services as well as remote working conditions for those who offer help-line services. Previous research has demonstrated positive and negative outcomes for individuals voluntarily offering support at crisis-line services. However, few studies have focused on the mechanisms at work. The social identity approach offers one potential avenue for exploration. Specifically, individuals who meaningfully identify as a volunteer can unlock the benefits of the social cure. However, this pathway has not been tested for volunteers in remote working environments. The current study tested associations between identification with a crisis support organisation, well-being outcomes, perceptions of social-support, and self-efficacy in remote text-based services. This study collected data from 157 crisis-support line volunteers in two remote-working contexts. Results indicated a serial mediated indirect effect. Specifically, increased identification as a volunteer predicted increased perceptions of social support. In addition, social support predicted higher levels of self-efficacy, resulting in increased levels of compassion satisfaction along with decreased levels of burnout, and secondary traumatic stress. Results emphasise the role of social identity and perceptions of social support in promoting positive outcomes for remote-working volunteers.

History

Publication

Journal of Community & Applied Social Psychology, 2023, 1–13

Publisher

Wiley and Sons Ltd

Other Funding information

We wish to acknowledge the contribution of our community partners Text about it 50808, and Shout 85258. Open access funding provided by IReL.

Sustainable development goals

  • (3) Good Health and Well-being

Department or School

  • Psychology

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