Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) that provide additional information about United Way 2-1-1, available services and the search database. If you are unable to find an answer to your question or need additional information, please contact us.

What is United Way 2-1-1?

United Way 2-1-1 is an easy-to-remember, three-digit number that families and individuals can call to obtain free and confidential information on health and human services and resources within their community.

What hours is United Way 2-1-1 available?

2-1-1 is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

What areas does United Way 2-1-1 serve?

The entire state of Minnesota, as well as Douglas, Pierce, Polk and St. Croix counties in western Wisconsin.

To what services does United Way 2-1-1 offer access?

2-1-1 offers information on a range of services, including childcare, counseling, education, emergency preparedness, employment, energy assistance, food, health care, housing, legal help, parenting resources, transportation and much more.

What role does 2-1-1 play in the event of a disaster?

In the event of a natural or public disaster, 2-1-1 serves as a means of collecting and disseminating information on resources and post-disaster assistance.

Are any onsite services available?

211 services are provided online and over the phone. We do offer speaking engagements, workshops, presentations and health/resource fairs for the purposes of educating people about 211.

What types of organizations are included in the database?

Both nonprofit and for-profit organizations that provide health or human services are able to join the database, along with government entities, civic associations and advocacy groups.
Download the Inclusion/Exclusion criteria document

How can I request an update to information about my organization?

To update your agency’s information listed in our public directory:

  • First find your agency and/or program by searching our online public directory here.
  • Click on your agency/program in the left column to see the detailed view.
  • Click on the “Email a verification request” button to receive an email to access a link to click on to make changes to your information.

If you can’t find your agency listed on the web, call us at 2-1-1 for assistance.

How can an agency or organization be included in the database?

Inclusion in the United Way 2-1-1 database is free and unrelated to whether an organization is a partner or sponsor of United Way 2-1-1. United Way 2-1-1 reserves the right to exclude or discontinue listings for organizations that have had serious complaints lodged against them with any regulatory body, organizations in the database providing similar services or United Way 2-1-1.

Agencies and organizations must meet the inclusion/exclusion criteria in order to be included in the database. Call 2-1-1 for more information.

How do I know that the agencies United Way recommends are legitimate?

United Way asks for agencies employee identification numbers (EIN), which are used to identify businesses. Services that are run on a volunteer-basis are vetted; if complaints are received about a particular service, we follow up and will remove it from the database if necessary.

Is the information accessed via the online database the same that would be received over the phone?

Yes, the online database is the same database used by the Information and Referral Specialists. Information and Referral Specialists are available 24/7 for inquirers to contact if they need help searching the online database or locating information on the website.

What outreach services does United Way 2-1-1 provide?

2-1-1 is available for speaking engagements, workshops, presentations and health/resource fairs.

Are there any restrictions on who can call or use the online database?

No, the United Way 2-1-1 service is available for anyone in need.

Is 2-1-1 available in languages other than English?

2-1-1 has multilingual speakers on staff and also uses an interpreter service.

How is United Way 2-1-1 funded?

United Way 2-1-1 centers receive funding from a variety of sources, including local United Ways, community foundations and local government funds. In Minnesota, 90 percent of funding comes from local United Ways.

Need help finding a resource?

Call to speak with one of our highly trained information and referral specialists by phone.

Your call is completely confidential, and we have call menus in English, Spanish, and Hmong.

Call 2-1-1

Toll Free: 800-543-7709
Local: 651-291-0211
*NEW*: Text your zip code to 898-211
(Available M-F 8am-7pm)*
24-7 / Confidential / All Languages

From Our Specialists:

Chat and text options at 2-1-1 will help us reach a whole new demographic of people with our services.

*Standard msg&data rates may apply. Text STOP to opt-out. For end user privacy and terms and conditions of texting with 898211, go to http://preventionpaystext.com/policies/