ME Connect

Here to listen. Here to help.

We deal with each person individually, in a sensitive and professional manner. Every communication is kept completely confidential.

You can reach us every day of the year and we’ve managed more than 35,000 calls since we began in 2003.

ME Connect is staffed by a fully trained and supervised team of volunteers – most of whom have personal experience of M.E.

0344 576 5326

365 days a year

“It is really good that you offer this service, it is such a relief to speak to someone who understands.”

“I have worried about this problem for weeks but within 5 minutes you have given me the answer, thank you very much indeed.”

Feedback from callers to ME Connect

Neil Riley, Chairman, ME Association, writes:

When you are ill with a chronic condition like ME there are many things you want to know…

What treatments work, where can I find a doctor who understands ME, where can I get guidance on filling in my benefit applications?

Even more important is to hear another voice, someone who understands how ME affects everyday life. Someone who will listen.

The role of ME Connect is simple. It is there to support people with ME and their carers to make  informed choices. It is there to listen to a caller and try to understand all the issues they are facing.

Each year ME Connect does this for thousands of people. Out of everything that the ME Association does for people with ME it is our Telephone Helpline of which I am most proud.

It is what a charity is all about; giving help to those who need it at a difficult time in their lives.

Our volunteers do that every day. Why? Because it is intensely rewarding for them to help others and they want to contribute something in their lives to society. By helping others, it in turn enriches their lives.

ME Connect is a member of the Helplines Partnership which promotes high standards

Hilary Briars, ME Connect’s Manager, writes:

“I am very proud of the fact that ME Connect takes thousands of calls each year and I’m equally proud of our volunteers who respond to these calls.

“We are all really pleased to be able to help so many people with ME and those who care for them.

“However, we would like to help more people and thus we need more volunteers to take calls.

“The work is rewarding. In a short call you can help a person with their problem or help a distressed caller get through their day.

“With so much information to hand and an understanding of ME, we can really help people.

“Many of our volunteers have appreciated the fact that they can do their training and take calls in their own home. Others have said that helpline work has given them a sense of purpose and a feeling of job satisfaction.”

“Thank you so much for giving up your time to work on this Helpline. It is just so nice to speak to someone who really understands what I am going through.” A caller to ME Connect.

Comments from volunteers:

“The training you receive gives you the confidence to answer the calls. You have all the information to hand, signposting lists for the questions you can’t answer, regular supervision to talk through any problems and of course you have lots of common sense and knowledge to see you through!”

“It goes without saying that helpline work is incredibly rewarding. It is wonderful to hear the words “thank you for being there”, “it’s so nice to talk to someone who understands”,  and “yes, that’s exactly how I feel”.”

“Before I started with ME Connect I was given training which taught me to listen, really listen, to the people who call. I found these skills transferred automatically to non-helpline contexts. As a result, I learned to connect better with others. Social situations hold less anxiety for me now.”

“I love working on ME Connect. I’ve always wanted to help people and thought I wouldn’t be able to do that when I got ill but being able to do this from home means that I can do what I want to do in an environment that suits me. The MEA staff and other volunteers are all really friendly and easy to talk to if you need help with anything.”

“Realising that you can, in some small way, make a difference to someone’s life is very humbling and rewarding.”

“I find my sessions fulfilling and I get a massive sense of satisfaction when I am able to help a caller feel better about things. I consider it a real privilege to work with ME Connect. It feels rewarding that just a small amount of my time can help someone else so much.”

Praise from callers:

“Thank you, you have been an absolute angel.”

“Thank you so much, you have helped me get through the day.”

“I didn’t know where to turn, thank you for pointing me in the right direction.”

“I really needed someone to talk to, I feel so much better now. Thank you.”

Please note:

All communications are treated in the strictest of confidence. Please check your contract for charging details. Calls cost the same as other standard landline numbers (starting 01 or 02). If you have a call package for your landline or mobile phone then calls will normally come out of your inclusive minutes.

We are a small medical charity and we do not have the capacity to answer long or complex questions relating to medical management, DWP benefit disputes and legal problems. ME Connect provides information and support and, where appropriate, signposting to further sources of help or information.

The ME Association

Please support our vital work

We are a national charity working hard to make the UK a better place for people whose lives have been devastated by an often-misunderstood neurological disease.

If you would like to support our efforts and ensure we are able to inform, support, campaign, and invest in biomedical research, then please donate today.

Just click the image to the left or click here for one-off donations or to establish a regular payment.

You can even set up your own fundraising event on JustGiving.

Or why not join the ME Association as a member and be part of our growing community? For a monthly (or annual) subscription you will also receive ME Essential – quite simply the best M.E. magazine!

ME Association Registered Charity Number 801279

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