“2020 has been a year of changes and challenges. 2-1-1 quickly adapted and began handling COVID-19 information calls. Statewide we answered over 53,000 COVID-19 related calls, and locally we took 2,210 of those calls. These new calls increased our call volume by almost 50%. We took over 6,600 local calls in 2020, more than in any of the past 5 years. We were happy to help our callers get connected to COVID-19 related resources as well as all the many regular needs also” said Amy Fluno, 2-1-1 Program Director.
2-1-1 is an Information and Referral Line available 24/7 to anyone looking for resources. 2-1-1 staff maintains a database of community resources and connects callers to the services or organizations that meet their needs. 2-1-1 is especially helpful to callers who have a “spectrum” of needs due to an emergency, such as loss of job or health issues. They can simply dial 2-1-1 and get referred to a number of agencies with one phone call.
Help us celebrate and promote this great service offered right here in our community on February 11th! You can help by using 2-1-1 when you have community questions and by telling your friends and family to do the same. There are also 2-1-1 marketing materials to share with the community.
In Wisconsin Rapids, Mayor Shane Blaser has officially proclaimed February 11, 2021 as “2-1-1 Day” as well.
In 2018, the 2-1-1 Wisconsin Addiction Recovery Helpline was established to connect people with local treatment services and recovery resources for any kind of substance use disorder, from opioids and methamphetamines to alcohol. With this dedicated line to helping those with addiction we have answered over 12,000 calls statewide. The service is available to anyone, including people struggling themselves or those reaching out to help someone else.
People can reach the Helpline by dialing 2-1-1 or 833-944-4673. The service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. More information is available at www.addictionhelpwi.org.
United Way’s 2-1-1 also offers TEXTING SERVICES as a way to find resources in our community. You can text your zip code to 898211 to get local resources sent right to your phone. Texting is available from 8am-4pm Monday through Friday.
“It is a great way to get resources when you’re on-the-go and cannot make a phone call,” said Amy Fluno. “Try it out today and get connected to local help in your area.”
FACTS ABOUT UNITED WAY’S 2-1-1
· There are 8 contact centers in the state of Wisconsin. Every county in Wisconsin is covered by one of these contact centers.
· In Wood County, 2-1-1 is a partnership between United Way of South Wood & Adams Counties and Marshfield Area United Way; and covers 13 counties from Ashland County to Juneau County.
· Each call is answered by a real person – an Information and Referral Specialist that has been trained in navigating the maze of human service programs.
· Non-English speakers are assisted through a telephone interpreting service.
· In south Wood County and Adams Counties we answered 6,686 calls in 2020 and the top three needs where:
1. Healthcare (COVID-19)
2. Housing & Shelter
3. Employment & Income
HOW TO CONNECT WITH UNITED WAY’S 2-1-1
· Dial 2-1-1 on your phone and you will be routed to the nearest contact center.
· If you have trouble getting connected, call our toll free number at 877-947-2211.
· Text your zip code to 898211.
· Visit our database of community resources at www.uwswac.org/2-1-1.
· All calls are FREE, confidential and available 24/7.