United Way Debuts 211

United Way Debuts 211
Free Information & Referral System in Massachusetts

North Shore United Way President Margo Casey was one of 200 community leaders present as Lt. Governor Tim Murray made the first official call on the Commonwealth’s new 211 information and referral line.

Massachusetts became the 17th state-wide 211 system in the country. 211 was established by the Federal Communications Commission as the national number people can call for non-emergency information and referral. It was left up to each state to implement its own system under certain guidelines. Here in Massachusetts, Mass211 is funded by 14 local United Ways, including the North Shore United Way.

Every day, Massachusetts residents need to find essential community services — everything from an after school program to a food bank, or care for an aging parent. The answer is Mass211.

All anyone has to do to get connected to the help they need is to call this easy to remember 3 digit number ‘211’. Callers will speak confidentially with an Information & Referral Specialist who will assess the caller’s needs and determine the service provider best equipped to handle their problems or crisis.

The Mass211 referral service is available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Both the call and services are free to anyone calling within the Commonwealth by either landline or wireless telephones.

‘Whether it’s for everyday needs or during a time of a natural disaster, residents of our North Shore communities can feel comfortable knowing that someone is there to help,.’ stated North Shore United Way President Margo Casey.

‘Mass211 was established to provide that essential link between those who need help and those who provide it. In addition to referral services, Mass211 will provide official information in the event of a disaster or emergency,’ Casey said.