Each week we will post a summary of interesting and representative 211 calls. This week, we have connections from New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador.
When people are experiencing homelessness, it can be hard to work on long-term needs. People are looking for where they are going to spend the night, and how they will get their next meal. Fortunately, 211 Service Navigators can work on both short and long-term needs with people experiencing homelessness, and they are there 24 hours to do that.
A 211 Service Navigator received a call from a woman in her early twenties who was looking for resources. She explained that she did not have permanent housing, and she had been referred to 211 by shelter staff. She was seeking assistance with finding housing and advocacy for people experiencing homelessness. She also wanted information on how to complete her income tax.
The Service Navigator listened with empathy to the caller’s circumstances and gave her time to feel comfortable. Even though she had been without housing for a while and knew the shelters, the caller did not know about other resources to assist her as well as about case management for individuals experiencing homelessness. The Service Navigator explained how case management and advocacy could help, and told the caller how to reach these agencies.
She was also referred to an agency, which offers an income tax clinic and she was given the phone number for the income tax clinics with the Canada Revenue Agency for further information and assistance. The caller said that she was really happy with the resources that she was given and that she would call back if she needed more help.
Newfoundland and Labrador:
Moving to a new province can be disorienting. 211 Service Navigators are there to help people learn about how services work in their new communities, and help them find what they need, when they need it.
A caller had recently relocated from another province to Labrador. He had a health card from his former province, but he had not yet applied to get an MCP Card from Newfoundland and Labrador. The caller needed to get a requisition for blood work, but was unable to find a walk-in clinic in the town where he resided.
The Service Navigator looked online and in her database, and also could not find a walk-in clinic in the caller’s town. She made a recommendation to book a virtual medical appointment with a doctor. She provided two options for this.
The caller was willing to take the referrals, but said: “I haven’t done a virtual appointment before; how is it done?” She walked him through the process, and he thanked her for referrals and explanation. After the call, she reflected that rural communities’ access to services can be very limited, and virtual services can help to fill that gap.