NJ 2-1-1 Newsletter - Spring 2019
Text ReadyNJ to 898-211 for Emergency Preparedness
NJ 2-1-1 is launching a new (free*) service with the start of hurricane season this year. We’re encouraging everyone in the state to text ReadyNJ to 898-211 so that they can become a part of a program we call Know it Before you Need it. This initiative seeks to educate people about emergency preparedness before they are actually faced with a situation that requires immediate action; encourages those with special needs in our state to register online at NJ Register Ready; and also positions those who sign up, to receive alerts and relevant recovery resource information when an emergency occurs in their area.
NJ 2-1-1 is written into the state’s emergency plan and serves as a communication conduit between government, first responders and the public at large. Just as NJ 2-1-1 is dedicated to helping people in need find resources during blue sky days, we are here to answer that call on the stormiest of days too. And, we are built to weather the storm. Our technological infrastructure is purposely redundant so that if one system fails another is immediately available to take over. Our telephony is cloud-based which allows for calls to be handled remotely. It also provides quick ramp-up capability which is essential if the volume of calls received dramatically increases, and enables a flexibility that equips us to direct calls to other locations including our 2-1-1 partners who provide back-up support.
Preparedness is an essential first step everyone must take if they intend to be ready to respond and recover from the next emergency. Texts that inform best practices before emergencies occur are fundamental in building a practical knowledge base. We’re encouraging everyone to further their awareness of emergency preparedness, response and recovery by texting ReadyNJ to 898-211. You must know it before we need it, if you have any hope of jumping to the ready when the time comes.
*Text messaging rates from your carrier apply.
Transportation Resources Enhanced
The most frequent feedback from our network of healthcare providers around the state is that a constant obstacle to care faced by their clients is the lack of transportation options. In response to what we learned we appealed for help to the NJ Department of Health and received funding that enabled us to dedicate a staff member’s efforts to the goal of enhancing the transportation resources that can be found in our database.
Database Resource Specialist, Ana Salazar dedicated herself to the effort, and in a matter of months hundreds of transportation resources in our database were updated or added. To see what is available in your area go to our Home Page, place the word “transportation” in the search bar, add your zip code and then click on the search button. If results appear to be limited, try expanding the search from 10 miles to a larger radius. To see what is available in every part of the state, click here and choose from the listing of sub-categories shown.
You can always dial 2-1-1 or text your zip code to 898-211 to get live help any time of day if you need assistance finding appropriate resources. Our community resource specialists use the very same database you access online.
Summer Resources Abound
When people visit our website, it is often to search our resource database in an effort to find local programs and services. Some don’t notice that we have informational content pages too. We spotlight seasonal topics in the Latest News For You section of our Home Page. One of those spotlights this season starts with Summer Camps. Go to that page for a listing of lower cost camping options that are often directed by county recreation programs like the YMCA. When you are on that page, you will also find a related listing of other summer topics including: NJ Cooling Centers; Simple Energy Saving Measures; Smart Food Safety Practices; Special Interests Summer Camps; Summer Camps for Individuals with Disabilities; Summer Food Programs; Summer Heat; Summer Parks and Recreation; and Summer Safety.