Each week we will post a summary of interesting and representative 211 calls. This week, we have connections from Newfoundland and Labrador and New Brunswick.
Newfoundland and Labrador:
Assisting with food security is not just about providing food. It is about making sure that the root causes of food insecurity are addressed. 211 Service Navigators will assess the situation holistically, so that the insecurity does not last.
A senior called 211 and sounded very upset. She said that she and son were isolating due to COVID and were in desperate need of food. The caller said that they have received a food hamper, but there was not enough food in it to last during their isolation period. The caller had left messages for several organizations to assist her, but she was frustrated and nervous that she would not receive help.
The 211 Service Navigator asked to advocate on their behalf and the caller agreed. She asked the caller several probing questions to make sure she understood where the caller had already tried to seek help. The Service Navigator also connected with their manager for direction and ideas.
The Service Navigator advocated for the caller and her son with an organization that could help the caller with another food hamper. She then connected back with the caller and let her know what had been done.
The Service Navigator was concerned that the caller and her son might not be receiving all of the funds and government programs to which they were entitled. This food insecurity could keep happening if they did not have sufficient funds. For that reason, she proposed connecting the caller with an outreach centre of Service Canada. The caller agreed and the Service Navigator made a warm transfer to the Atlantic Region Outreach Centre for Service Canada.
Family members may want to help their loved ones in financial distress, but may not be able to do so because of their own financial constraints. Rest assured that 211 Service Navigators are there to give information on options for financial assistance for people in desperate circumstances.
A 211 Service Navigator took a call from a mother who stated that her daughter who was in her late teens was pregnant. She continued to explain that her daughter did not have any income of her own and would need financial support and vitamin supplements throughout her pregnancy. She also mentioned that, unfortunately, she could not help her daughter herself in terms of finances.
The Service Navigator listened to the caller and assured her that there was help available for her daughter. She probed for more details and clarified the situation with the caller to make sure that she thoroughly understood what the daughter would need. She made referrals for both income assistance and help to acquire the needed vitamin supplements.
The caller wrote down the information and repeated it to the Service Navigator. The Service Navigator also encouraged the caller to have her daughter contact 211 herself for more assistance during the prenatal period and after the baby was born. The caller said she would let her daughter know about the referrals and also about the 211 service.