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For the state of Colorado, Governor Hickenlooper declared February 11th 2-1-1 Day. Here in Larimer County, 2-1-1 is a program of the United Way of Larimer County and is dedicated to providing information about and referrals to local, statewide and national resources. People often call 2-1-1 when they need answers about where to go for clothing, food, rent, shelter, support groups, volunteerism and other types of community services.
2-1-1 also plays an integral role in local disaster response by answering inquiries on road closures, shelters, family reunification and creating/distributing the Relief and Recovery Guide, among other things. Following the High Park Fire, Don Sandovol with the Colorado Department of Local Affairs stated, “Without 211, the recovery process would be much more challenging to muster resources in a coordinated fashion. It is truly one of most organized systems in the recovery process. It allows people and organizations to contribute in a most effective manner.” Additionally, with the recent September flooding, Nick Christensen, Executive Officer for the Larimer County Sheriff's Office and Board Chair for the United Way of Larimer County said, “United Way's 2-1-1 team was there with us from day one and through the nights as well. Without 2-1-1, our emergency dispatchers would be overwhelmed with calls from evacuees requiring resources and citizens wanting to provide help. I could not be more proud of United Way's response to this major natural disaster.”
Learn more about what 2-1-1 does by visiting a recent blog post, So What Exactly Does 2-1-1 Do?, where you will find compelling and tear-jerking videos about 2-1-1's impact.
With that being said, here are 4 ways you can support your local 2-1-1 day on February 11th (and the other 364 days a year):
1. Join us for dinner at Texas Roadhouse
Texas Roadhouse in Fort Collins will be contributing 20% of qualifying bills to United Way 2-1-1 on February 11th from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. So what qualifies your bill? Present this flyer to your server at the time of your visit. If you don't have time to dine in, Texas Roadhouse will honor flyers for to-go orders as well.
2. Receive an Enterprise Zone Tax Credit
The Enterprise Zone Contribution Tax Credit encourages private donations to programs that create or maintain jobs within the Enterprise Zone area, which is a state-designated area in need o f economic growth and diversification. United Way 2-1-1 has been selected as a contribution project due to its important role in providing direct assistance to community members struggling to find stability.
To be eligible for the Enterprise Zone Contribution Tax Credit, a minimum one-time contributionof $250.00 to United Way 2-1-1 is required. Smaller contributions and payroll deduction gifts are always welcome, but those would not be eligible for the 25% tax credit.
For more information, click here.
Advocate for 2-1-1 by telling your friends, family, clients or strangers about the program. People in need often do not know how to navigate the maze of resources and 2-1-1 is always a good first call to get pointed in the right direction. 2-1-1 can provide a myriad of resources over the phone or online and has outreach materials including a business card, bookmarks, brochures, resource listsand posters that are available for anyone to distribute. Contact the main 2-1-1 number for more information or to get the outreach materials.
4. Volunteer with 2-1-1
2-1-1 has a variety of volunteer opportunities open to the public through a few different means:
Help 2-1-1 by following up with clients, updating client information, or updating the 2-1-1 database.
2-1-1 relies heavily on volunteers when responding to a disaster. Volunteers are needed for data entry and answering incoming disaster-related inquiries. 2-1-1 hosts regular Disaster Volunteer Orientation to familiarize potential volunteers with the tasks and need for volunteers during disasters. The next orientation will be Tuesday, March 4th from 5:30 p.m. - 6:15 p.m. Click here to sign up.
2-1-1 also serves as an information line for volunteer inquiries. 2-1-1 can help navigate United Way's online volunteer databaseand Volunteer Resource Guideso that individuals and groups can more easily be linked with volunteer opportunities that fit their needs and skill sets.
2-1-1 strives to empower clients and help them move towards self-sufficiency. Help this program to be a continued success by supporting them in one of the ways above.
Contact 2-1-1 by dialing 2-1-1 from aland lineor 970-407-7066 and 1-866-485-0211 from anywhere. They are available by phone Monday - Friday 7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. and 24-hours aday onlineor via the mobile app.
Copyright 2015 United Way of Larimer County