By Harold Ambler
By Harold Ambler
WARWICK – On Dec. 2, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Rhode Island donated its former Wellness Van to the United Way’s 2-1-1 in Rhode Island helpline program during a ribbon cutting. The United Way 2-1-1 program is a 24/7 information and referral helpline for Rhode Islanders; the donated van will be used to increase the program’s community presence and provide a private, mobile meeting space for one-on-one counseling, information and referrals.
The United Way 2-1-1 Outreach Van will travel throughout Rhode Island, serving as a resource for those seeking help through 2-1-1. In addition to the confidential 2-1-1 helpline or the 2-1-1 office in Providence, the van provides another option for those seeking help or services for themselves or loved ones. Formerly used by BCBSRI as a Wellness Van for local health screenings, the van is equipped with mobile capabilities and private internal space for individualized counseling.
Since its establishment in 2007, United Way 2-1-1 in Rhode Island has become a vital part of Rhode Island’s safety net. Every day, Rhode Islanders from all walks of life contact 2-1-1; underscoring the importance that when all else fails, people need one single place to turn for help. Over the past year, 2-1-1 handled more than 208,000 calls – more than any previous year – and has now topped one million requests for help since inception.
“United Way 2-1-1 in Rhode Island is making a very real difference in improving the quality of life here, and BCBSRI is very pleased to offer our former Wellness Van to further 2-1-1’s already strong reach,” said Peter Andruszkiewicz, president and CEO for BCBSRI. “This donation and our partnership with UWRI support our long-time vision of working to improve the health of our customers and all Rhode Islanders.”