About Us

It’s no secret that so many people in the Jewish community are suffering silently.


How it all started

How The HelpLine got to where it is today.

Jun 2019

The HelpLine opened for eight hours a week with 17 volunteer call handlers


Apr 2020

The HelpLine expanded its hours to 10am to 10pm Sunday to Thursday


Oct 2020

The HelpLine expanded again to 24/7 with 50 volunteer call handlers


Feb 2021

The HelpChat opened offering an instant messaging chat service through SMS


May 2021

The HelpCentre was launched to further support families in crisis, offering streamlined access to therapy and further support


Jun 2022

Launch of our new bespoke telecoms software in conjuntion with 3Sixty

Meet the Team

R' AY Goldman

Rabbi AY founded the HelpLine, alongside Shaya Halpern, in 2019 . R’ AY has been working with struggling teens and their families for over 15 years and to this day is instrumental in supporting victims of abuse all over the UK. R’ AY is considered an expert in the complex field of disengaged youth and is a sought after speaker around the world, lecturing parents of struggling children. R’ AY has been running his own yeshiva for 18 years, which is now based in Manchester. R’ AY’s continued work is transforming the way the wider Jewish community responds to abuse, trauma and mental health.

Debbie Gross

Debbie Gross is the founder and Director of Tahel- a women’s crisis centre in Israel. She has dedicated her life to caring, advocating for and supporting victims of abuse. Debbie is a pioneer in advancing education and awareness of abuse by giving lectures to teachers, professionals and Rabbonim worldwide, as well as in the Israeli Knesset. Debbie has helped communities around the world set up Helplines, including our HelpLine. She provides in depth training, and 1:1 support and supervision to the volunteers and HelpLine administration. Debbie continues to guide and advise The HelpLine team.

Shaya Halpern

Shaya Halpern founded the HelpLine alongside R AY Goldman. Shaya has over 20 years of experience dealing with struggling teens- including those with suicidal ideation, substance abuse, and mental health problems. He uses his vast experience and knowledge of local and foreign residential treatment programmes to advise and support struggling teens and their families. Having his experience, vision and ongoing guidance is a key reason the HelpLine, Help chat and Help centre are continuing to thrive.

David Lachs

David Lachs is an integral part of the running of the HelpLine, by training and supporting all volunteers in how to use The HelpLine and HelpChat systems. He provides additional support to volunteers who request advice or supervision during challenging conversations.

Liz Knopf

Liz Knopf has over 40 years of experience of teaching with in the Jewish Primary Sector. Now retired, she volunteers for the NSPCC and is a counsellor on a national phone line for children. Liz’s vast knowledge and experience make her an incredibly valuable member of The HelpLine team. She is one of the main points of contact for volunteers who may require real time guidance during a call or chat, or to discuss any conversations after a shift.

Rebecca Abeles

Rebecca Abeles has been part of the leadership at the HelpLine since its inception. She provides vital support in the HelpCentre for girls in crisis. Rebecca has been working with vulnerable girls for many years, and in 2018 she co-founded Keren, at which she continues to be a trustee.

Our Volunteers

Our volunteers are a diverse group of men and women who go through a rigorous training period before they begin their work on The HelpLine and HelpChat. Despite their diversity, our volunteers share key skills and attributes that make them perfectly suited to their role. They are compassionate, warm and understanding individuals, trained to truly listen with zero judgement. They give callers or chatters space to express and discuss their lives and challenges and will collaborate with them in finding positives steps forwards.