AARP and United Way Launch 211 Program to Help Washington Caregivers

two women, one older, one younger, possibly mother and daughter

AARP Washington has joined forces with 211 and United Way Worldwide to connect residents with trained, compassionate people in their communities who can provide caregiving help at any time, any day. People who provide care for someone—like a family member or friend—need care, too, but navigating available services or programs that can help can be a challenge. Through 211, a free information and referral helpline, caregivers can talk to actual individuals in their community to find local resources for loved ones and themselves, too.

211 connects individuals with expert, caring help. Through 211, family caregivers can:

  • Get immediate support and talk with a local resource specialist.
  • Address basic necessities such as housing, food and utilities for themselves and their loved ones.
  • Connect to local services and organizations who can help with transportation needs of loved ones, provide healthcare and information and resources including prescription payment assistance, and access to food delivery services, home safety programs, veterans’ benefits, and more.
  • Get referrals to specialized help for themselves and their loved ones.

“As champions for caregivers, we know at AARP that caregiving can be a complex and challenging role, and many may not know where to turn to for help or may be overwhelmed by the sheer number of resources available,” said AARP State Director Marguerite Ro. “211 simplifies the process by helping caregivers connect to programs and services, access financial assistance and emotional support in their communities, and more.”

“Across America, 211 is seeing continued demand for local services to help family caregivers and their loved ones,” said Joshua Pedersen, Senior Director of 211 at United Way Worldwide. “Often, someone might call, text or chat 211 to find out what support is available for their loved one, and the call specialist is trained to hear when they need more support for themselves, too. By joining forces with AARP, this will help fill a critical resource gap. “

211 trained call specialists respond to 50,000 requests for help every day all over the U.S. and tap into 1.5 million locally curated resources. Washingtonians can get the local information they need by simply dialing 211 today for free help. Dial 211 or visit

Jason ErskineContributor Jason Erskine is Communications Director at AARP Washington.

Photos courtesy of AARP Washington.

This article appeared in the January 2024 issue of AgeWise King County.