On Feb. 11, British Columbians celebrate 211 Day, and province-wide access to help where and when they need it. Created in partnership with United Way, bc211.ca is the BC-wide resource that links residents to community, social and government resources on a comprehensive range of topics from employment assistance to mental health support to housing assistance.
In the Lower Mainland and on Vancouver Island, residents can also find phone, text, and live web chat support for innumerable questions people have.
A snapshot of local needs
It will come as little surprise to anyone living in the Lower Mainland that the majority of last year’s 43,000 calls, texts and emails to bc211 from local residents sought housing information.
In fact, housing was the focus for a full 59 per cent of those contacting bc211 from the Lower Mainland. Individuals seeking housing information and support ran the gamut from women fleeing domestic violence to those facing rental eviction to those released from hospital with nowhere to go.
One family had lost their home in a fire, while another with an 11-month-old and a young child discovered mould in their supportive housing suite. Advised to begin packing up, leave and head to the hospital to get checked, they had nowhere to stay.
Another person inquired for a senior friend who had been evicted. While friends and family had managed to find her temporary hotel accommodation, that time was up, with no solution in sight.
- About 800 calls came from the Lower Mainland looking for shelters for families.
- 300 calls came from people released from hospital in need of a place to stay.
One-stop link to the information you need
Regardless of where you live, bc211.ca is there to help, connecting individuals 24/7 with current, reliable information about community resources close to home.
Beyond housing information and support, Lower Mainland queries to bc211 included:
- 7 per cent – substance use
- 6 per cent – health
- 5 per cent – income and financial assistance
- 5 per cent – mental health.
You’ll also find information about home care, day programs and more, all easily accessed through the one-stop website. Topics are also tailored to aboriginal, immigrant and senior and youth communities, making it simple to access the information you need.