The History of THE PHONE

Crisis Intervention Center (CIC) was founded on the campus of LSU in 1970 as a student organization which featured a crisis helpline, known locally as THE PHONE, where students could call to receive emotional support through stressful or traumatic situations. THE PHONE became, and still remains, a state-wide recognized brand that symbolizes hope and comfort for those in need.

With its success, it grew to become a 501 (c)(3) non-profit  in 1974. Since its accreditation and national acknowledgement in the late 1970’s, CIC has provided many best practices that are used in crisis centers across the country.

Founded on the LSU campus in 1970

How We’ve Evolved

In the 1980’s we launched two important groups that became cornerstones of CIC.  The first was the Survivors of Suicide support group (SOS), which allowed individuals who were recently bereaved by suicide to be part of a peer facilitated group. Being the first of its kind, this model was adopted by other centers across the country and remains as one of the longest running support groups. The second group was a Children’s Bereavement Group (CBG). This initiative focused on children who were dealing with complicated grief following a traumatic death. The model provided short term assistance focused on teaching healthy coping mechanisms and reducing the likelihood of destructive behavior in the future. 

Under the direction of Dr. Frank Campbell, the first Active Postvention Model (APM) was developed in Baton Rouge in 1998. APM, described in literature, demonstrates how survivors of suicide can be an installation of hope to those newly bereaved and effective resources for support during the grief process. The model was later outlined in textbooks and research and received recognition by various academic groups and trade journals throughout the United States and Europe. Today, the LOSS team program exists in many communities throughout the country and recently started a national conference for those  collaborating nationally. 

Starting in 2009, CIC began working with a national coalition led by CONTACT USA on the development of the first free and confidential online emotional support (OES) model, later known as CrisisChat.org.  The CrisisChat.org initiative later became the basis of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline’s Crisis Chat initiative funded by SAMHSA. We were the first crisis center to achieve accreditation for online emotional support (OES) and remain the organization in the state of Louisiana with the designation. CIC is also the only crisis center in the country to achieve three industry leading accreditations at the same time — American Association of Suicidology (AAS), Alliance of Information and Referral Systems (AIRS) and CONTACT USA. 

In recent years CIC has led the field in understanding the role that care management plays in telephonic crisis intervention. We have successfully operationalized models around care management that are currently used across the state of Louisiana and beyond.

Successfully developed best practices around crisis intervention and care management currently utilized across the state of Louisiana and beyond

Where We are Now

Our role in crisis intervention and counseling has expanded to comprise all facets of traumatic loss with a focus on suicide, homicide and violence. Our current, as well as future mission is to offer prevention, intervention, and postvention services that provide support in times of crisis and reduce the impact of suicide, homicide and violence.

This mission is accomplished through innovative programming not found in traditional therapeutic settings, such as, 24-hour availability and utilization of paraprofessional volunteers and staff.

CIC’s goal is to reduce emotional distress that can lead to destructive behaviors, especially suicide, for those experiencing a crisis, and to advance the field of crisis prevention through early intervention and postvention.images_0000_Vector-Smart-Object

We provide support in times of crisis and reduce the impact of suicide, homicide and violence in the community

Constant Innovation Drives Us

CIC’s newest and most innovative program, the Statewide Crisis Response Network (CRN), was launched in 2015.  This launch prompted the change of the Center’s name from Baton Rouge Crisis Intervention Center (BRCIC) to Crisis Intervention Center to reflect the broader reach. With its CRN, CIC can address the significant gaps in Louisiana’s mental and behavioral healthcare and change the outlook for many Louisianans who seek behavioral healthcare services. CIC has successfully broken a significant barrier health and human service non-profits face by successfully integrating itself into the existing continuum of behavioral healthcare through the provision of comprehensive crisis intervention services.  Until now, this critical component was absent from the behavioral healthcare delivery systems in place.

Our Crisis Response Network Aims to Help Those in Emotional Pain Statewide