Today is 2-1-1 Day! Trident United Way’s 211 year-end results show Tri-County needs continue to be high due to COVID-19

While vaccines provide hope to both health and the economy, calls to 211 Helpline show many in the Tri-County are still suffering. Great day to donate $211

NORTH CHARLESTON, SC – February 11 is 2-1-1 Day at Trident United Way, a day to raise awareness about the needs in our community and ask for people to consider donating $211 to provide resources to this valuable service.

New numbers from Trident United Way show the Tri-County is still reeling from the economic hardship of COVID-19. Referrals from its 211 Helpline shot up 51% in 2020 compared with 2019. Referrals are defined as a 211 Call Specialist recommending a client to Trident United Way or partner agencies who may be able to provide direct assistance.

Trident United Way’s 211 Helpline is a free service which operates as a safety net for all individuals needing help finding assistance, by improving the effectiveness and coordination of health and human services across the state.

A breakdown of vital categories shows an even bigger increase in needs. Referrals for utility assistance spiked 104% in 2020 compared with the previous year.


Tri-County 2020 totals – Service Referrals made by 211

Service category       Referrals        Change in 2020 vs 2019

Electric assistance      12,478             104%

Water assistance        2,913               104%  

Rent assistance          7,287               48%

Food pantries              2,426               32%

All service referrals     33,147             51%    


“Behind every number is a person, a family, our friends and neighbors who through no fault of their own were hit with an economic hurricane called COVID-19,” said Trident United Way president & CEO Chloe Knight Tonney. “We are proud to work closely with service providers across the Tri-County to improve the lives of our community, but the fact remains that accelerated philanthropic leadership is needed to get us through these tough times.”

Even as the national economy improved in late 2020, the needs in the Tri-County remain as the 4th quarter stats below show.

Tri-County 4th quarter (Oct to Dec 2020) referrals to 211

Service category       Calls               Change in 2020 vs 2019 (Q4)

Water assistance        1,500               284%

Electric assistance      2,067               68%

Rent assistance          2096                57%

Click below for a downloadable soundbite from Amanda Lawrence, Trident United Way VP of Community Impact

Amanda: “It helps people with needs they have, basic needs like housing assistance, food, rent, particularly during this time of COVID-19. We are so thankful that we can continue to provide this to the community, for the Tri-County, for years to come.” :15

Trident United Way is asking donors to help make a special give of $211 on this 211 Day!

“While the Tri-County economy continues to improve, we need help to maintain the high quality of service for the growing numbers of callers,” Tonney said. “Supporting Trident United Way provides a lifeline for the free 211 service for which our clients will always be grateful. United we can make a lasting impact on people’s lives.”

Please click here to donate to Trident United Way and support 2-1-1 Day.


About Trident United Way - Celebrating more than 76 years of service, Trident United Way is a catalyst for measurable community transformation in education, financial stability and health. According to the Chronicle of Philanthropy, United Way is America’s favorite charity. Learn more at