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National 2-1-1 Day Celebrates vital service

Feb 10, 2016

Rochester, N.Y. (February 11, 2016) – February 11 (2/11/16) is National 2-1-1 Day and 2-1-1/LIFE LINE, a program of Goodwill of the Finger Lakes, is joining in the celebration of the easy to remember telephone number that connects callers to information about critical health and human services available throughout the Greater Rochester and Finger Lakes areas.

“2-1-1/LIFE LINE is available for the community we serve all day, every day of the year. The program never shuts down,” said Caitlin Peterson, 2-1-1/LIFE LINE program operations and clinical manager.

In 2015, 2-1-1/LIFE LINE answered over 131,000 contacts for help through calls, live chats, emails and TTY contacts.

“Contact volume has grown steadily each year and shows no signs of slowing down as the need in the community increases in conjunction with the rate of poverty in the area,” said Peterson.

Callers can make an average of eight phone calls to different numbers before finding the services they need. By dialing 2-1-1, callers get access to an extensive database of community resources that is updated on a regular basis to ensure accuracy. With over 6,000 contacts in the database, it is a tool that helps 2-1-1/LIFE LINE telecounselors work with callers to devise a plan to help that may include:

  • Where to go for food and shelter
  • What to do if the utilities are turned off
  • Access to mental health counseling

“We have to be prepared with information about the incredible range of services that are available, as well as be prepared to assist people in crisis to stay safe and get connected to the help they need,” said Peterson.

2-1-1 Day Celebration and Early Help Seeking Campaign

During the National 2-1-1 Day celebration event being held on Thursday, Feb. 11 from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. at 500 South Clinton Avenue, attendees from various community-focused agencies will have an opportunity to celebrate the vital services 2-1-1/LIFE LINE provides and discuss how to further partner with the program to increase impact.

2-1-1/LIFE LINE will present its Community Partner Award to New York State Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb for the work he and his office have done to support the growth of 2-1-1/LIFE LINE in recent years.

“Providing people with information and access to help during a crisis are among the most important things we can do in the community," Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb said. "I am truly honored to receive the Community Partner Award and look forward to working with 2-1-1/LIFELINE to increase awareness and promote the invaluable services they offer.”

2-1-1/LIFELINE is also celebrating the one-year anniversary of the Early Help Seeking community impact campaign. A community coalition made up of 2-1-1/LIFE LINE, Causewave Community Partners, the United Way of Greater Rochester, and a number of other organizations joined together to help reduce Rochester’s poverty rate – one of the worst in America.

“2-1-1/LIFE LINE’s partnership has been integral to the initial success of the Early Help Seeking community impact campaign, connecting people in need in Rochester and the surrounding area to help before their situations get out of hand,” said Todd Butler, president and CEO of Causewave Community Partners.

In it’s first year, the Early Help Seeking community impact campaign held summits for non-profit agencies in Monroe, Ontario, Livingston, and Wayne counties to inform providers about the services 2-1-1/LIFE LINE offers and how using these services can help them and the people they work with.

More information about 2-1-1/LIFE LINE can be found online at More information about the Early Help Seeking community impact campaign can be found online at

About 2-1-1/LIFE LINE

2-1-1/LIFE LINE is a program of Goodwill of the Finger Lakes. 2-1-1/LIFE LINE has been a part of Goodwill since 2005, but has served the Greater Rochester region since the 1970s. 2-1-1/LIFE LINE is a blended information and referral service for human service organizations and a crisis intervention hotline. In conjunction with the National Suicide Prevention Line, 2-1-1/LIFE LINE serves as a regional and national back up center for individuals contemplating suicide. 2-1-1/LIFE LINE also serves as one of six back up centers for the Veterans Crisis Hotline, and is one of three national centers answering calls for the Disaster Distress Helpline. Anyone in the community can contact 2-1-1/LIFE LINE by dialing 2-1-1 or by going online to to chat or access information. To follow 2-1-1/LIFE LINE on Facebook, just search “211LifeLine”.