211 how can I help you?
The phone is ringing off the hook at the Wiregrass United Way 211.
In the past year, volunteers answered right at 15,000 calls.
What was the most common need?
“It was the same state wide and nationally, it continues to be housing. Energy and utility assistance from rent and housing,” said David Duke.
Food assistance ranks number 2, and health care assistance comes in right after that.
Although they are the most common, executive director David Duke says people can call for anything.
The calls range from an elderly person needing a car repair or a sex offender who is seeking counseling.
211 is designed to put those in need in touch with agencies that can help like the American Red Cross.
Last year 211 made more than 27,000 referrals.
“We do disaster relief. We do training. We do utility assistance. The staff at 2-1-1 is really good at sending those calls directly to us,” said Susan Holmes of the American Red Cross.
These operators are also really good at directing people who want to volunteer to an organization that can really use their talents.
“More people that want to give help are calling us more than ever, and i think that's a wonderful thing. That's something that we want to make sure the public is aware of. You might not need help yourself, but you can call 211 to give help,” said Holmes.
And someone will be ready to take your call 24 hours a day, and 7 days a week.