The Phone is Ringing at 211 in Sherman - - Texoma news, weather and sports

The Phone is Ringing at 211 in Sherman


This tough economy has people calling out for help. The number of people calling the 211 hot line in Sherman is up by 8-percent since last year. Deeda Payton breaks down the numbers.

Recently 211's demographic has been moving towards women ages 25 to 45, especially mothers. 211 is a national program and hotline that refers people to agencies that can help with everything from shelter to job training.

The Sherman office operates out of the Texoma Council of Governments and organizers say their call volume is up eight percent from last year, a trend they attribute to the economy. But, they say that's why they exist. "It's geared toward anyone who needs assistance. Generally, people think it's geared toward low-income families, but it addresses their need in the community."

Here's a breakdown of the 8% increase. Last year, a little more than 1200 people dialed 211 for help on average every month. This year 211 is answering about 1500 calls a month. An increase of about 3,000 calls per 30 days, with many of the callers asking for help with childcare, health care for their whole family, and utility bills, specifically electricity bills. Where to find a local food pantry is also a popular question at 211.

The Tulsa office in Oklahoma has seen a major increase in call volume this year of 22%.

Deeda Payton, KTEN News.