United Way Worldwide has declared February 11 as National 2-1-1 Day. 2-1-1 is an easy-to-remember telephone number that is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week as a resource for referrals, as well as health and human services information. Dialing 2-1-1 connects callers with specialists who provide essential community information about everything from food and housing resources to job counseling services, health resources, and utility bill assistance. 2-1-1 also offers a multilingual and TTY service. In 2012, more than 75,000 calls came into the Massachusetts 2-1-1 system.
Designed, in part, to reduce the number of non-emergency calls made to 9-1-1, Mass2-1-1 is also the primary information call center during times of disaster. It provides residents with critical, up-to-date disaster information, numerous post-disaster programs and services, and interpreter services. With the support of social service organizations and, in collaboration with Massachusetts Association of Information and Referral Specialists (MAIRS), United Way provides Mass2-1-1 as a resource for the community.
Mass2-1-1 is just one of the many ways United Way of Central Massachusetts connects people and resources to improve the community. By first providing a safety net to stabilize those unable to meet basic needs, United Way can focus on the building blocks for a good life: Education, Family Stability, and Health.