United Way of the Bay Area

211 Serves Our Men and Women in Uniform

Posted on March 15, 2012, by United Way in Uncategorized

Sometimes I forget that our country is at war. And sometimes, our men and women in uniform fall through the cracks when they return from serving abroad. I am glad that I can provide help for vets through the 211 helpline.

Chad served for four years, and after his return home, the Veteran's Administration (VA) was supposed to pay for his schooling. After months of not receiving a check and being given “the run-around,” Chad finally gave up and decided to call 211.

When I answered Chad's call, he said he had only $4 in his bank account, his roommates were hounding him for rent, and he didn't know how he was going to eat.

I was able to refer him to Peninsulaworks, an employment assistance center where he could also apply for General Assistance (GA), a cash assistance program for single adults, and Calfresh, a food assistance program. I also referred Chad to local food pantries so he could get something to eat while waiting for his Calfresh application to be approved. Finally, I referred him to the Daly City Community Service Center to find out about other financial assistance programs.

Chad was very grateful, and said, “You helped me more in four minutes than the VA helped in the past 4 years.” That made my day, and I felt like I had done my part to serve those who serve our country.

211 answered 185,000 calls last year, and is always happy to assist men and women in uniform who are struggling to get by. If you know someone who needs help and doesn't know where to turn, urge them to call 211 which is open 24/7.

Photo courtesy of Jeffrey Turner

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