Even small children know that they can dial 911 in an emergency. However, many do not know that in Oregon and Southwest Washington they can dial 211 to get access to a variety of community information resources. The 211info contact center is a nonprofit that serves all of Oregon’s and some of Washington’s counties. The organization can provide community members with information and referrals to services in each of the following areas:
Childcare and Parenting
211info provides free referrals to qualified childcare services. The service also has staff who specialize in foster parent support and support for parents of children with special health needs.
211info operators have experience in connecting Oregon and Southwest Washington residents with utility assistance programs. The service has relationships with several charities and nonprofits that provide payment assistance to individuals who risk losing access to utilities. 211info callers can get customized recommendation and help applying for any of these assistance programs.
When there is a state emergency, 211info is ready with guidance on how individuals should handle the emergency. Currently 211info has information about the state’s response to tsunami debris and the novel coronavirus.
211info is a great resource for information about local food pantries and applying for SNAP (food stamps). You can also call in to find out about farmers markets, community gardens, and summer food programs for youth.
211info is partnered with several health access assistance programs including programs for rural breast cancer patients and reproductive health. Callers can also inquire about pesticide-related inquires and report potentially dangerous pesticide application.
Housing and Shelter
211info is partnered with a number of organizations whose goal is to provide solutions to people with housing crises. Housing services include organizations that specialize in connecting individuals with housing and classes that educate renters on overcoming screening barriers.
In addition to dialing 211, community members can get in contact with 211info by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or texting their zip code to 898211.
Victoria Blachly is a partner at SYK, and an experienced fiduciary litigator that works with many elderly clients, cases and causes. She is also a proud Board Member for the Oregon Alzheimer’s Association Chapter.