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950 Days Ago

by Joshua B. Pedersen

In mid-March 2020, the 211 network was activated to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic – and for the last 950 days #Team211 has delivered some amazing results and impact.  Here are a few examples:

Coverage Map

Expanded Coverage.  A handful of 211 centers were on the verge of closing in 2019 but #Team211 went to work, kept the phone lines working and actually expanded coverage in nine states.  211 began providing access to 13 million more residents in the US.  Canada also expanded coverage to 100% of their population.

National Data Platform.  Piloted in 2019, this community resource directory has grown to be the most comprehensive and accurate database that includes 45 states with more than 1.1 million program services.

Awareness.  In partnership with the Ad Council and the Rockefeller Foundation, United Way Worldwide launched a $10M PSA campaign promoting 211.  The Guiding Light PSA was seen more than 695,000,000 times.  Surveys indicate awareness of 211 has increased from 13% to more than 40% during the last 950 days.

$10M Investment.  For the first time, United Way Worldwide raised funds specific to 211 and provided $3M in grants to more than 100 211 contact centers for COVID-19 support.  An additional $7M has been provided to 211s operating programs like Ride United, Caregiver Outreach, and housing supports.

Call Volume.  For the last 950 days call volume surged and remained almost double that of pre-pandemic levels.  The 211 network has responded to more than 50 million inquiries in the last 950 days – that means more people than ever have been able to pick up the phone, talk to someone and get help.

If #Team211 feels exhausted after 950 days – it’s because we haven’t stopped working to provide impact for good.   From hello to help, 211 is here.