2-1-1 Referral and Assistance Helpline
Everyone needs help at some point in their life. For some, family and friends step in to help in one’s most dire hour. But others have no one to turn to, nowhere to go. When they are most desperate for a helping hand and feel abandoned by the world, 2-1-1 is there.
United Way’s 2-1-1 Referral and Assistance Helpline is a free service available to every person in Central Florida 24/7. From help paying rent to avoid eviction, finding food pantries to fill hungry bellies, suicide intervention or connecting someone to local community resources, specially trained 2-1-1 specialists are ready to help.
Nancy was a single mom faced with the terrifying reality that her family was going to have to live on the streets. She had no family she could stay with, no friends to reach out to for help. She was on her own until she heard about 2-1-1 and called desperately seeking help. The 2-1-1 specialist found a homeless shelter for Nancy and her children to stay so they could have a warm meal and roof over their heads.
Staying at that homeless shelter was the turning point for Nancy’s life. Besides the immediate relief that her family had somewhere safe to stay, it allowed her the opportunity to pursue a long-term solution.
Determined to make a better life for her children, Nancy approached the director of the homeless shelter about what she could do to find a sustainable job, especially in the medical field. She was referred to Project OPEN, a United Way funded program through Community Vision. With a dedicated spirit and hard work, Nancy enrolled in the program became a CNA thanks to the classes and certifications provided by Project OPEN.
Besides waking up with a sense of pride and purpose, Nancy has moved her family into stable housing, now owns a car and is ecstatic to hear her youngest son talk about wanting to become a surgeon someday.
How Your Dollars Help
Hitting rock bottom is a terrible place to be. Without 2-1-1, there are individuals in our community who would be all alone at their darkest time. Last year, 2-1-1 helped 389,373 people who had no one else to turn to. By donating to United Way, you are helping keep 2-1-1 operating, providing a helping hand to those who are most desperate for help and hope. Your dollars make programs like Project OPEN available to those who want to make a better life for themselves and their families.
United, we can provide a comprehensive continuum of support for individuals and continue the fight for the health, education and financial stability of our community.