Between October 2021 and December 2021, United Way of Rock River Valley's 211 service received almost 11,000 calls. Those calls ranged from people needing housing, income, utility, or legal assistance, to those in need of food or family support. 211 is more than just a helpline, it's a lifeline for local residents.
The following is a real local success story as reported by a 211 operator after a call. Certain details have been changed to preserve anonymity.
"It was another holiday alone [for the caller] which she isn't used to and just wanted someone to talk to.
We talked for a while about her friends whom she's really close to but now lives further away from and the people that live in her building who are driving her nuts.
On the bright side she has a beautiful new apartment in a great area with a great landlord. She's thinking about going to see a counselor once she gets settled and calling a cleaner or organizer to help her get everything unpacked and in order.
At the end of the call she felt better about the situation and we were able to laugh about things and life. I let her know she can call anytime and just talk if she needs to."
211 provides resources and referrals for those facing a variety of difficulties in our community. But, importantly, as in this case, it also provides a listening ear. 211 operators are here to talk, listen, refer, or do whatever else it takes to improve residents' lives whenever they need it—24 hours a day, 365 days a year.