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BC2112021-06-09T15:36:14-07:00

BC211 is a confidential, multilingual telephone, texting and online service for all BC residents. 211 and BC211.ca provide free information and referral to a full range of community, social, and government services, and operates twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.

During the COVID-19 outbreak, 211 has expanded services to enable seniors to register for Better at Home volunteer services to assist with grocery shopping, check-in calls, meal prep and prescription pick-up. Volunteers are encouraged to register at BC211.ca

What is BC211?

BC211 is a phone and online information service that provides up-to-date, reliable information regarding community, social, non-clinical health and government services. The service directory database includes over 13,000 current entries that document and describe services and organizations that can help people in their time of need. The website is optimized for mobile devices and online chat is available seven days a week from 8 am to 11 pm. Some examples of common search topics include:

  • Employment support
  • Legal assistance
  • Mental health and addiction services
  • Housing options including shelter locations
  • Seniors services
  • Children and youth programs, and much more
www.bc211.ca

Are you a senior looking for community services?

In March 2020, the provincial government, United Way Lower Mainland and other key partners expanded the 211 service across BC to support the new Safe Seniors, Strong Communities Program and enabled all British Columbians to dial 211 to find community and social services.

In addition, seniors are able to register for volunteer support by calling 211 through the new Safe Seniors, Strong Communities Program.

Connecting people across Canada

211 now reaches more than 26 million Canadians, providing confidential information to anyone experiencing life challenges.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is 211 Day?2021-02-03T15:09:49-08:00

February 11th is 211 Day across North America! Join the conversation online and let people know that, while life can be difficult, finding help doesn’t have to be. Help starts with 211.

Access the 211 Day Toolkit below in the marketing kit.

Don’t forget to use the hashtags #211DayCanada #Helpstartshere #bc211 and tag @unitedwaysibc and @bc211

What marketing resources are available to promote the BC211 service and 211 Day??2021-02-03T15:04:34-08:00

A marketing kit is available to help agencies and service providers promote the BC211 service to employees and clients. This package includes a poster and postcard file that can be printed internally. We’ve also provided the stakeholder info and promotions package for 211 Day (February 11th).

NOTE: Electronic files such as graphics, Powerpoint and PDFs can be provided by contacting us below. These can be used in your newsletter, website or for email distribution.

To receive a marketing package, please contact United Way SIBC at 1-855-232-1321 or email: info@unitedwaysibc.com.

What is 211?2020-04-02T10:42:25-07:00

The 211 number is the national abbreviated dialing code for access to community, social and government services information and referral. 211 is a free, multilingual, confidential service, accessible 24/7 to the entire population in communities with 211 services. In British Columbia, 211 (the full suite of phone/text and website) is currently available in the Metro Vancouver, Fraser Valley, Sunshine Coast and Squamish Lillooet Regional Districts.

In June of 2017, nine other United Ways joined the bc211 movement & United Way Lower Mainland and expanded the online service bc211.ca to all British Columbians. The service directory database now includes over 13,000 current entries that document and describe services and organizations available to help people. The website is also optimized for mobile devices and online chat is available seven days a week from 8 am to 11 pm.

In March 2020, 211 expanded services to enable seniors to register for Better at Home volunteer services to assist with grocery shopping, check-in calls, meal prep and prescription pick-up. Volunteers are encouraged to register at BC211.ca

Who can use 211 and bc211.ca?2020-04-02T10:43:20-07:00

211 is for everyone…from individuals, families and professionals to community agencies, government and people facing barriers due to poverty or personal difficulty. 211 and bc211.ca will help anyone get information and access to vital community services within their local neighbourhood.

What are the benefits of BC211 services?2020-04-02T10:45:14-07:00

211 and bc211.ca provides a single point of access for everyone to use and includes community, non-clinical health, government, and social services.
– Simple for everyone, especially useful for vulnerable populations; seniors can register to receive Better at Home volunteer services during the COVID-19 outbreak.
– Reduces confusion, frustration, and unnecessary delay in reaching services.

 

 

 

 

Who operates BC211?2020-04-02T10:46:47-07:00

In British Columbia, the 211 Information & Referral service is operated by the 211 British Columbia Services Society, a charitable non-profit organization funded by United Ways and through contracts with various partners including the City of Vancouver and the BC Government. More info: http://www.bc211.ca/our-funders/ 

Why would you use BC211?2020-04-02T10:47:33-07:00

BC211 benefits British Columbians of all ages and can be accessed by anyone who has access to the internet via phone or computer.

Examples of inquiries received by information and referral services include:
– A senior citizen wanting home care support in order to live independently.
– A homeless person seeking a shelter bed, or a place to get out of the cold and to have a hot meal.
– A family facing eviction that doesn’t know where to turn for help.
– A recent immigrant needing language and employment training.
– A young mother worried about how to properly care for her newborn child.
– A laid-off worker wanting to find out about employment insurance.
– A family searching for child care services in their community or close to work.
– A parent asking where to get food for her family.
– A concerned neighbour trying to help a friend in an abusive relationship.
– A family trying to find services for their son with a newly diagnosed illness.

Why do United Ways throughout BC support BC211?2020-04-02T10:48:16-07:00

United Way helps find solutions to community problems and funds a network of social service agencies throughout the province. 211 complements United Way’s role as a funder of community services by helping people connect to the services they need.

How did 211 come about?2020-04-02T10:49:03-07:00

In August 2001, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) assigned the 211 telephone number for community information services across Canada. This application was a partnership by United Way of Greater Toronto and Community Information Toronto, United Way of Canada/Centraide Canada, and InformCanada. The CRTC’s decision followed a public consultation process in which the 211 proposals received support from community organizations, government and the telecommunications industry.

 

Additional Information

If you have any questions, please contact us.

BC211 can be reached by visiting www.bc211.ca or calling 211. If your agency or program is not listed, please contact bc211 directly at updates@bc211.ca.

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