If you or someone you know needs help, dial 2-1-1 for free access to information and referrals to services that provide basic needs including food, clothing and shelter; legal services; drug treatment; employment support; childcare; eldercare and more. The confidential helpline, funded by United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region, is available from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. It is staffed by knowledgeable and caring call specialists who can communicate with callers in over 150 languages, as well as TTY for the hearing impaired.
What is 2-1-1?
The easy to dial 2-1-1 number is a free and confidential helpline that links people to the services they need. Available from 9 am- 7 pm, seven days a week, people can call about everything from basic needs like food, clothing and shelter, to volunteer opportunities, legal services, drug treatment, employment support, childcare, eldercare and more.
United Way's goal is to get the wealth of our 7-county health and human services directly to the people who need them. Whether answering to a natural disaster, a personal emergency or to furnish tools to foster independent lives, United Way seeks to relieve the burden on our seven counties by helping those in need.
In times of disaster, 2-1-1 can give callers up-to-date information on emergency shelters, road conditions, etc., relieving pressure on 9-1-1, which is meant to answer true emergency calls.
Your donations to United Way’s Community Fund helped these callers to 2-1-1 receive the help they urgently needed
The mother of an adult daughter with AIDS and cancer called, not sure where to find beds for her grandchildren who live with her. The daughter, overhearing the conversation, took the phone and asked about services for people with cancer, particularly transportation to medical appointments. Sensing that the daughter needed vital information, the specialist spent a great deal of time with the mother and daughter. By the end of the call, they received information about medical transportation and clinics, help with bill payments, help with financial assistance, and of course, where they might be able to get beds for the children.
An elderly woman suffering from has emphysema and other ailments that necessitate use of oxygen 24/7 called, worried that she was going to lose her motorized wheelchair. She had recently received one through Medicaid, but the company who delivered the chair was now threatening to take it back. Though already working with an attorney, the woman was scared. The 2-1-1 specialist talked her carefully through her options, gave several referrals, and then facilitated a three-way conversation with her attorney. Confident that the woman had received the help she needed to ensure that she would not lose her much needed wheelchair.
A mother called about her 18-year old daughter. While at her ex-husband’s house, the daughter was using drugs and alcohol, and often skipping school. Once, while picking up her younger siblings, she had an accident. The specialist helped the woman by providing an opportunity for her to talk through her problems, and referred her to several sources of help for her and her daughter.
For a Fact Sheet about 2-1-1, click here.