What is 211?
211 is an award-winning 3-digit phone and online service helping Ontarians connect to the complete range of government and community-based health and social services. Calls are answered 24x7 by professional information and referral specialists who are trained to assess caller needs, and to refer callers to the most appropriate resources.
211 in Ontario is supported by the Province of Ontario (Ministry of Community and Social Services), local United Way organizations, and some municipalities. 211 also receives project support from public and private sector partners such as Ontario Trillium Foundation, and Green Shield Canada Foundation.
The 211 helpline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Your call will be answered by highly trained Information & Referral Specialists who will help you find a service to meet your needs.
- Residents can call 2-1-1 for information on community, social and health services, such as:
- Where to enrol new students
- How to access a food bank
- Where to find community housing
- How to get help paying bills
- What mental health services are available
- Where to find parenting help
- How to access addiction support
- How to reach the police for non-emergencies
....and much more
Free. Confidential. Live answer 24/7. Available in over 150 languages.
What is the difference between 211, 311, 411 and 911?
The N11 numbers are assigned by the CRTC to create easier pathways to help for Canadian residents, but it can be confusing if you aren't sure which one to call.
By now, most residents (including children) are aware that 911 is the number to call for life-threatening emergencies.
In larger Ontario cities, 311 is the number established to access information about municipal services (such as by-law enforcement, road repairs, garbage collection, municipal recreation programs, property taxes, etc).
411 is the number that residents call for business or residential listings (phone book/yellow pages).
211 is the number to call for information on community-based health, social and government services. It is the number to call when you need help, but aren't sure where to turn.