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Coming soon: access to county services by calling 211

FPS staff report

Health and human service information and referral resources will soon be just a phone call away for Carroll County residents.

A roll-out is planned June 7 that will connect residents to available services simply by dialing an easy to remember telephone number: 211.

 The 2-1-1 service is free, available 24 hours a day; 7 days a week; 365 days a year.

When information surfaced regarding an incentive program from the Ohio United Way intending to expand the number of Ohio counties offering 2.1.1 services, it caught the attention of the Carroll County Family and Children First Council (FCFC). The Council met with Nick Roman, 2-1-1 coordinator for Ohio United Way and Sherri Mckinney-Frantz, director 2-1-1 and Government Relations for the Greater Stark County United Way.  Council members, along with other community leaders in attendance, were able to ask questions and learn more about the benefits of 2-1-1 for Carroll County residents.

“The Council was decidedly excited about adding 2-1-1 to its initiatives,”  said Matt Campbell,  Carroll County Board of Developmental Disabilities superintendent, who was chairman of the FCFC council. “We decided to coordinate the project and to proceed to contract with the Stark County 2-1-1 call center.”

According to current Council Chair Rachel Rinkes, who is administrator for Juvenile /Probate Court, “the Stark County call center will provide trained specialists who have access to a Carroll County data base that will contain information for up to 100 non-profit local agencies that can provide help.”  Rinkes added that “information from those resources is currently being requested by the Call Center in anticipation of the launch of Carroll County 2-1-1.”

Some of the resources included in the data base are agencies that can help callers with locations for food pantries, assistance with rent, help with clothing, assistance with utilities, and free tax preparation sites are among many others.  The calls are free and confidential.

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