THE Newport and Gwent Samaritans answered 10,400 calls for help in the last year, according to figures released this week.

In Wales there were 691 volunteers in 2013 and the service was contacted 161,170 times by people struggling to cope. The Wales Impact Report 2013/14 shows calls coming in to the Samaritans volunteers every three minutes last year.

The report was launched on the steps of the Senedd by the Minister for Health and Social Services, Mark Drakeford AM, and details the work the nine Samaritans branches in Wales are doing across the country to reach out to local communities.

The 80 volunteers at Newport have been supporting clients of Cruse while they wait for bereavement services and a successful relationship with Bipolar UK. The work with young people at the branch has continued to develop and partnerships are now in place with Newport, Torfaen and Monmouthshire to support schools in the aftermath of a suicide. The number volunteering with Samaritans across the UK and Ireland in 2013 reached 21,200.