In an emergency, everyone knows who to call. Since before you can remember, you’ve been made aware of the life-saving help that dialing 9-1-1 can provide.
Who do you call for those less immediate needs? Need help paying rent this month because you just spent your last few dollars on the water bill and are facing an eviction? Do you need to get to a medical appointment but can’t drive? Where is the closest food pantry located? Where can you go for maternity and infant care? What after-school programs are available for your children? 211 is the answer.
211 is a vital service that connects millions of people to help every year. To get expert, caring help, all you need to do is simply pick up a phone and dial 2-1-1. The call to 211 is confidential, easy to use, and always free. No matter the situation, 211 specialists listen, identify underlying problems, and connect people in need with resources and services in their community. They provide help with a vast variety of needs such as food, utility payments, employment, legal services, health care, transportation, addictions, veteran services, human trafficking, crisis intervention, disaster/emergency needs and much more. The Iowa call centers have access to a Language Line that provides interpretation services in 150+ languages at any time making it easy for anyone to utilize. 211 is free and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
A 211 app is also available on the Apple App Store and Google Play for those with smart phones. If calling is a hardship, the app as well as www.211.org, provides fast, accurate referrals to human services or assistance programs located in our area.
United Way of Story County (UWSC) works with 32 partner agencies in our community who have resources listed through 211. As a supporter of human services throughout Story County, we appreciate that 211 is able to provide this comprehensive resource guide in our county. As we fight for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in our community, tools like 211 are imperative to getting help in the hands of those who need it.
Next time you or a loved one are in need of assistance, make 2-1-1 your first call when you have a question, problem, or don’t know where to turn. Visit 211.org for more stories of what 211 has done and can do for our community.