HONOLULU — Following the tragic fires on Maui, Aloha United Way (AUW) is encouraging residents who need assistance to call, text or chat its 211 Information and Referral Helpline. Operating seven days a week between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m., AUW 211 connects individuals and families with a live Community Resource Specialist who can refer them to essential services and information, such as shelter, healthcare, meal services and more. AUW 211 aims to answer at least 90% of calls, texts, and chats within 30 seconds.
“As the only comprehensive statewide helpline, we’re a one-stop shop for those in need and those who want to help,” said Jennifer Pecher, vice president of 211 Community Response. “We’re working as quickly as we can to provide referrals and contact information for services, including food, shelter, FEMA, healthcare, mental health services and volunteer response efforts.”
More than 8,000 donors have contributed to Aloha United Way’s Maui Fire Relief Fund so far. All funds donated to the Maui Fire Relief Fund are sent to Maui United Way. The organization is providing immediate funding to nonprofits actively involved in disaster relief efforts and direct financial support to individuals and families affected by the fires. To make a donation, please visit auw.org and click Maui Fire Relief Fund on the homepage.
As of August 15, AUW 211 was fielding double to triple call volume depending on the day of the week and anticipates the inquiries will rise as temporary cell towers are installed and recovery efforts continue.
In addition to the live helpline, AUW 211 offers a searchable database online. Search.auw211.org is a curated search and filter system directly connected to the helpline’s database. This platform presents verified resources tailored to specific needs, locations, and times, ensuring individuals seeking disaster-related support can access pertinent information and assistance seamlessly. Users can navigate a comprehensive range of services, from housing assistance to mental health support.
About Aloha United Way
Founded in 1919, Aloha United Way brings resources, organizations and businesses together to advance the health, education and financial stability of every person in our community. AUW has evolved over the years and adapted to meet our community’s greatest needs focusing on amplifying non-profit agencies and their work as well as the 211 statewide helpline, ALICE Initiative and Safety Net Fund. A member of United Way Worldwide, AUW supports nonprofits and communities on Oahu. For more information, visit AUW.org.