With your help, surviving can become thriving.

There is no other service in our region that has a similar pulse on our community’s needs. 
Through 211, these needs are brought into focus.

Every day, thousands of working Dane County residents struggle to find affordable childcare, access health care, buy healthy food, and secure a job that pays the bills and for other essential needs.

This need is heightened as we head into winter – and United Way 211 is here to help.

United Way 211 is a vital information and referral service leveraged by thousands of people right here in Dane County. Clients contact 211 to access free and confidential crisis and emergency counseling, disaster assistance, food, health care and insurance assistance, stable housing and utilities payment assistance, employment services, veteran services and childcare and family services.

211 provides expert, caring help – no matter the situation, the specialists at 211 listen, identify underlying problems, and connect people in need with resources and services that improve their lives.

211 meets real needs in real time – in 2018 alone, our local 211 answered more 31,000 calls (averaging 85 calls per day), helping our neighbors with life-changing support.

In 2018, our local 211:

  • Handled 31,382 calls
  • Gave 50,700 resource referrals to callers
  • 211 volunteers gave 2,248 hours of service
  • 211s across the US answered more than 11 million calls and almost 1 million texts, chats and emails

211 does more than “patch people through” to agencies. 211 specialists are trained to identify and address root causes of a client’s problem and connect them with a wide range of available resources that meet all the underlying needs, not just the one that prompted the call, text or email.

211 is a vital part of United Way’s efforts to build a stronger community and fight for the education, financial stability and health of every person in Dane County. By connecting people in need with the best resources available to them, 211 helps make the social services ecosystem more efficient and effective so resources can go further.

“This service is absolutely amazing. My son is in crisis right now and I’m not quite sure I would have located all the resources without the 211 service. It’s amazing what you all are doing. Thank you so much.”

- Local 211 caller

By supporting 211, you can be part of solving community problems and helping families achieve stability. 

Other ways to be #Champions4Change

Check out our 2019 Holiday Wish List
Whether it’s wrapping gifts for children and families or hosting donation drives, learn how you can make the holidays a little brighter for our neighbors.
Download or view the wishlist here!
Upcoming United Way events

Community Change Sponsors

Thank you to our generous corporate partners who have committed to support United Way’s four largest events throughout the year! Click here for more information.


Impact Lives Forever

Consider endowing your annual gift (multiply by 25). Remember United Way in your estate plans.

United Way of Dane County Foundation, Inc.

For 97 years, United Way of Dane County has fulfilled a mission of changing lives and strengthening our community. Gifts to the United Way of Dane County Foundation, Inc. sustain this mission and extend your legacy of effective, local philanthropy.

For more information, please contact Kristi Shepard at (608) 246-4399 or foundation@uwdc.org

Call 2-1-1, text 898-211 or access our online 2-1-1 database here.

Get Connected. Get Help. 

United Way 2-1-1 is a 24/7 information and referral service that connects people to a variety of resources such as food pantries, utility and rent assistance, job training, transportation resources, support groups, home chores for older adults, tutoring and youth recreation, and community clinics. Call us if you have any questions or are having difficulty finding the resources you need. There are not currently enough services to meet demand, but we will do our best to connect and support you. Calls to 2-1-1 also help the community understand what resources are needed, and provide insight so United Way can continue to tackle the root causes of these issues.