The Kristin Brooks Hope Center

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The Kristin Brooks Hope Center (KBHC), a 501(c)3 public benefit corporation was founded on May 20, 1998 by H. Reese Butler II after the death of his wife, Kristin Brooks Rossell Butler, who tragically became one of the more than 34,000 Americans who died by suicide in 1998. Realizing an urgency in this high profile public health crisis—which for many takes on meaning only when it happens nearby—KBHC was founded by her survivor with funds from the death benefit provided by her employer. Kristin suffered severe post partum psychosis (PPP) after losing her unborn child on December 5, 1997. Her struggle with PPP was brought on by the prescription drug Zoloft which resulted in an SSRI syndrome. KBHC is more commonly known as the creator of the first network of suicide hotlines in the United States networked under the easy to remember toll free number 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433).


H. Reese Butler II started the Kristin Brooks Hope Center after he received a check from his wife's employer which was a death benefit amounting to one years salary. The amount was $34,017. Reese decided to donate the money to an organization focused on preventing suicide as a result of post partum depression or psychosis. Upon learning there was no such organization in 1998 he decided donate it to an organization that ran a national suicide hotline for people in crisis. Upon learning that in 1998 there was no national suicide hotline linking the more than 800 community based suicide crisis hotlines he founded the Kristin Brooks Hope Center and began linking those community crisis hotlines through 1-888-SUICIDE(784-2433). 1-888-SUICIDE and1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433) were both part of the National Hopeline Network from its activation September 16, 1998 until the FCC temporarily reassigned[1] it in January 2006. The US Surgeon General David Satcher dedicated 1-888-SUICIDE(784-2433) on May 7, 1999 during a press conference organized by KBHC founder, H. Reese Butler II which was held in Senate Dirkson Building. The event was filmed by Dempsey Rice a Brooklyn based filmmaker (Daughter One Productions) for a project she was working on for HBO. The press event wrapped up with Jock Bartley, founding member of Firefall, singing "Call On Me" written for a 1998 compilation CD to benefit the Colorado based Pikes Peak Mental Health Crisis Center. Jock introduced H. Reese Butler II to Jonathan Cain of Journey with the hopes of creating a benefit concert to pay the phone bill for 1-800-SUICIDE(784-2433). The concert took place on November 12, 1999 at the Warfield in San Francisco. It was called "Reason to Live" and featured Firefall as the opening act with Journey headlining. Bev Cobain, cousin to Kurt Cobain author of the book "When Nothing Matters Anymore" was the Master of Ceremonies for the concert.

HELP Grant[edit]

During the three year federal grant known as the HELP Project, two separate studies to determine the effectiveness of suicide hotlines were conducted using 1-800-SUICIDE(784-2433) to conduct the evaluations.[2][3] In the credits for the Mishara led study he specifically thanks[4] Reese Butler, the Kristin Brooks Hope Center staff, Jerry Reed, and the Directors and helpers at the crisis centers who participated in this study.


  1. ^ Salmon, Jacqueline L. (2006-08-18). "Unpaid Bill Has Suicide-Prevention Hotline at Risk of Shutdown". ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2018-02-03. 
  2. ^ Mishara, Brian L.; Chagnon, François; Daigle, Marc; Balan, Bogdan; Raymond, Sylvaine; Marcoux, Isabelle; Bardon, Cécile; Campbell, Julie K.; Berman, Alan (June 2007). "Which helper behaviors and intervention styles are related to better short-term outcomes in telephone crisis intervention? Results from a Silent Monitoring Study of Calls to the U.S. 1-800-SUICIDE Network". Suicide & Life-Threatening Behavior. 37 (3): 308–321. doi:10.1521/suli.2007.37.3.308. ISSN 0363-0234. PMID 17579543. 
  3. ^ Gould, Madelyn S.; Kalafat, John; Harrismunfakh, Jimmie Lou; Kleinman, Marjorie (June 2007). "An evaluation of crisis hotline outcomes. Part 2: Suicidal callers". Suicide & Life-Threatening Behavior. 37 (3): 338–352. doi:10.1521/suli.2007.37.3.338. ISSN 0363-0234. PMID 17579545. 
  4. ^ Mishara, Brian L.; Chagnon, Fran¸ois; Daigle, Marc; Balan, Bogdan; Raymond, Sylvaine; Marcoux, Isabelle; Bardon, Cécile; Campbell, Julie K.; Berman, Alan (2007-06-01). "Which Helper Behaviors and Intervention Styles are Related to Better Short-Term Outcomes in Telephone Crisis Intervention? Results from a Silent Monitoring Study of Calls to the U.S. 1–800-SUICIDE Network". Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior. 37 (3): 308–321. doi:10.1521/suli.2007.37.3.308. ISSN 1943-278X. 


External links[edit]

  • ^ "Dempsey Rice". Dempsey Rice. Retrieved 2018-02-03.