211 Day is February 11

Vermont 211 Celebrates 211 Day

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Elizabeth Gilman, Executive Director

Essex Junction, Vermont (February 10, 2023) – Saturday, 2/11, is 211 Day, celebrating the go-to resource Vermont 211, which received 42,674 calls and texts for help for immediate and long-term challenges last year.

Throughout 2022, trained 211 community resource specialists (CRS) connected people to locally available services, including help with rent, food, utility bills and health care. For example, there were 9,203 referrals for housing and shelter; 1,978 referrals to tax information and appointments; and 1,878 connections to public assistance programs like General Assistance and 3SquaresVT (Food Stamps).

211 is a free, confidential, 24-hour information and referral service that connects all Vermont residents with community, health, and human services support. Anyone in need of help or information can call 211 or *text their zip code to 898211 to reach a trained 211 CR specialist. *Texting is available Monday-Friday: 8am-10pm.

Elizabeth Gilman, executive director of United Ways of Vermont, which operates Vermont 211, is encouraging people to use the service.

"People reached out to 211 last year to find information on basic needs, like heating or utility assistance, elder care, or to find the closest food pantry. They also called for everyday information like help connecting to Help Me Grow, or how to locate job training or find free tax filing support," Gilman said.

211 has received feedback from people it has helped over the years:

This friend of mine called Vermont 211 and spoke to a very nice gentleman. He was so compassionate and understanding, gave very knowledgeable information and truly helped my friend out in their time of distress and need. Thank you for what you do for people that are struggling, and please let your staff know that their kindness was very much appreciated.”

A vast amount of local information is available through the service, including health and mental health resources, health insurance programs, support for older Americans and people with disabilities, adult day care, Meals on Wheels, respite care, home health care, transportation, homemaker services and support for children, youth and families.

Vermont 211 has been operating for 18 years, having started on 211 Day in 2005.

Starting on February 11, 211 is available to 99% of people in the U.S. and across all of Canada.

If you or anyone you know needs help, call 211 or visit Vermont211.org. Help is available 24/7, in many languages. 211.org is also available in Spanish.