The 211 helpline is available everywhere in the province of Ontario by phone, text, onlinechat and email.
Our helpline is answered by real people 24/7. Service is available in 150+ languages.
Text is available Monday to Friday from 7a.m. – 9p.m. ET.
Live chat service is available Monday to Friday from 7am – 9pm ET.
What happens when you contact 211?
Step 1, connect: Whether you contact 211 by phone, text, or live chat, you are connected to one of our Community Navigators (real people!).
Step 2, needs assessment: 211 Navigators are trained to do a needs assessment, asking the right questions to fully understand your unique situation.
Step 3, information and assistance: The Navigator will provide a referral to the right government or community-based program or service based on their assessment of your needs. They have access to tens of thousands of programs and services across the province.
Step 4, advocacy: The Navigator can provide tips on advocating for oneself when accessing community resources. In some cases, the Navigator will offer to advocate on behalf of the caller to secure the right support.
Step 5, follow up: Community Navigators will often ask if they can follow up with the caller and if accepted, they’ll check in on a future date.
What questions will the Community Navigator ask?
Navigators will also document a few anonymous pieces of information that will help 211 and community partners assess in which sector and region services may need to be strengthened. This will include your age and gender.
211 uses this caller data to paint a clearer picture of both the demand for and supply of services to help inform decision makers on future community investment strategies.
What if I want to find support, but don’t want to talk – and text and chat are closed?
If you aren’t comfortable speaking with a Navigator but want to find support outside regular hours for text and chat, you can search for resources on our home page or use our chatbot, Navi.