House Bill 211 Passes

We are happy to announce that in early June, HB211 passed on the floor 193-2.  This is a sweeping success for all the advocacy to bring PA211 to Pennsylvania.  PA211 is the easy to remember 3 digit telephone number to access health and human service information and referral 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for residents in Pennsylvania.  

CONTACT Helpline has been providing health and human services information and referrals to SouthCentral Pennsylvania for over 40 years and for the last 6 years we have been a part of the movement to improve access by using the 2-1-1 telephone number.

The next step is in the Senate.  Senate Bill 211 will be on the floor for a vote in the next couple weeks.  We are hoping for the same level of support from the Senate that 2-1-1 received from the House.  

 

Annual Gala Date Announced

CONTACT Helpline will hold their Annual "Save a Life" Gala on August 17, 2017, at the Radisson in Camp Hill PA.  

Sponsorships are available to support this premier event and of course the over 41,000 callers to the helpline each year.  This is a great opportunity to support an organization that has been in the community for over 47 years and has assisted over 900,000 callers.  

For more information on how to support the Gala, call the business office at 717-652-4987 or email at contact@contacthelpline.org.

CONTACT Helpline Participating in the Highmark Walk

Join CONTACT Helpline on May 20th at 9 am for the Annual Highmark Walk at the Harrisburg HACC Campus.  This annual event is a great way to support CONTACT helpline with our mission to provide our community with a 24-hour listening, health and human service information and referral hotline using highly trained volunteers.  

For over 47 years, CONTACT has been in our community serving as the place to call when you have a need.  You can support CONTACT by participating in the Highmark Walk.  All the money we raise goes directly to keeping the helpline available for our community.

Just go to http://hcf.convio.net/contacthelpline, where you can make a donation, form a team or walk as an individual.  For a $30 donation, you receive a T-shirt.  For every $50 your raise, you are eligible to receive raffle tickets for great prizes.  

This is a rain or shine event, let us hope this year will be a sunny day.  If you have questions or want to send a check directly to CONTACT, please call the business office at 717-652-4987.

 

CONTACT Helpline now offers Text access for Information and Referral

Starting in 1970, CONTACT Helpline continues to be the only 24-hour hotline for our community members, so whenever you need to talk or find help, you had somewhere to turn. We are not the same organization we were 47 years ago, but our mission continues to be the same, to provide our community with 24-hour listening, health and human service information and referral hotline using highly trained volunteers.  Over the years, change focused on improving our speed of service by using specialized information and referral software and using state of the art telephone technology.  

In 2011, we improved access to information and referral services by adding the 2-1-1 telephone number, making it easier than ever to find help.  As of March 1, 2017, we are adding the newest level of access for our service area, text.  

As text has taken over as a major way of communicating, it was only a matter of time that we began to use this technology as a way to improve access to information and referral.  All you need to do is text your zip code to 898211 and we will respond with referrals to community services.  

Now you can reach out for help in a way that is most comfortable for you.  Dialing 2-1-1 continues to be the number one way residents reach out for assistance.  The database is available online at pa211.communityos.org, where you can search on your own.  We respond to email requests for assistance at contact@contacthelpline.org and now you can reach us by texting your zip code to 898211.  

In 2016, CONTACT assisted over 41,000 callers throughout the Southcentral Region and from across the country.  The number one reason someone reached out was for loneliness and reassurance.  The number one information and referral request was for housing assistance, which includes help with paying rent.  CONTACT Helpline is available 24 hours a day 7-days a week and we are always in need of volunteers to help us service the community.  

Thanks Rotary Club of Colonial Park!

CONTACT Helpline wants to thank the Rotary Club of Colonial Park for their recent contribution. For many years now, the Rotary Club of Colonial Park has been a strong supporter of the 24 hour listening, health and human services offered to our community by CONTACT.  In particular, they have provided funding so that CONTACT could bring the easy to remember 2-1-1 telephone number to the area.  The use of the 2-1-1 telephone number for health and human services information and referral is a national effort to increase access for all in need.  

We are grateful for the on-going support of the Rotary Club of Colonial Park.  It is only through your support that we are able to serve more than 40,000 callers each year.  

 

Amazing Day of Giving with Zeroday Brewing Company

red white and brew

On Thursday, June 30th, CONTACT Helpline held our exciting Red, White and Brew Day of Giving event at the Zeroday Brewing Company. Over 50 people came out to enjoy some pulled pork and baked beans, drink the specialty “Red, Whit and Blue” beer that Zeroday created, play some trivia and even do a little hula hooping on the side. Baskets and prizes were raffled off every 30 minutes and participants walked away with fun items like handmade pots by local artisan and CONTACT volunteer Dave Hunter, a foursome of golf at the West Shore Country Club and even a 5lb Hersheys chocolate bar! With glow sticks and cupcakes, event-goers partied and laughed until the brewery shut down for the night!

red white and brew

Sponsored by UGI, Barley Snyder Attorneys at Law, LB Ford Smith, Cathy Kimmel and Zeroday Brewing Company, the event turned out to be a great, successful fundraising and outreach event for CONTACT Helpline with the midtown Harrisburg community. 

red white and brew

We can't wait for everyone to come out and have fun with us at our next event!

Friends New and Old at Successful Summer Open House

Our executive director talking about CONTACT Helpline's mission and history.

Our executive director talking about CONTACT Helpline's mission and history.

Our open house was a success! We enjoyed a pleasant evening, thanks to Silver Spring Presbyterian Church, where we welcomed newcomers to CONTACT Helpline, our mission, and our volunteer opportunities. It was a pleasure meeting everybody and introducing them to our organization and we thank you all for taking the time to come out and learning a little bit more about CONTACT Helpline. We hope it was a fulfilling for you as it was for us.

We would also like to thank all the current volunteers who attended and shared their stories about working with us. Hearing from our volunteers about their challenges and successes brings great joy to all of us here at CONTACT and reminds us of why we do this work – for our callers. Our dedication to our callers drives us to do our best every day, and we hope to increase our volunteer corps with people who understand and are passionate about that vision as well.

Another thanks to Silver Spring Presbyterian Church for allowing us to use their space – you were very hospitable hosts and gave us a beautiful, comfortable atmosphere to share our mission with other people.

If you were not able to make it, do not fret! We have another event coming up on Thursday, June 30th – our Red, White, and Brew Day of Giving at Zeroday Brewing Co. More information can be found here.

Great conversations were had about CONTACT and our volunteer opportunities!

Great conversations were had about CONTACT and our volunteer opportunities!

If you want to learn more about volunteering for CONTACT, you can schedule an appointment with our Volunteer Coordinator by calling the office at 717-652-4987 ext 2012, or e-mail her at contact@contacthelpline.org. Our next training session begins Monday, July 11th at 6 pm.

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Highmark Walk a Rainy Success

On May 21st, CONTACT was one of the many community organizations that braved the rain to participate in the annual Highmark Walk at the Harrisburg campus of HACC.  This was the 6th year that CONTACT was a part of the event and the first year the rain played such a dampening role. 

In spite of the weather, our dedicated walkers showed up to walk on our behalf.  We are so proud to have such dedicated volunteers and donors that they came out in the rainy weather to support CONTACT.

This year our walkers raised over $3,100 to benefit the helpline and the over 42,000 callers who reach out annually for assistance with finding community services and are in need of a listening ear.  Thanks! to everyone who supported the Highmark Walk and let's hope for a sunny day next year.

CONTACT Helpline participates in the Highmark Walk

Join CONTACT Helpline on May 21st at 9 am at the Harrisburg campus of HACC for the Highmark Walk for a healthy community.  This is the 6th year that CONTACT has been a participating agency with the Highmark Walk and we look forward to another successful event.  For more information on how you can form a team or walk on behalf of CONTACT, call the CONTACT business offices at 717-652-4987 and ask to talk with Jessica.  Hope to see you at the Walk.