CINCINNATI, Ohio (March 16, 2022) — When coronavirus plunged 57-year-old David Howard into crisis, he was at first unsure where to turn.
The Roselawn resident, who lives alone, was diagnosed with COVID-19 and couldn’t work. He lost his part-time job. “I was living on Social Security disability income,” he said. He soon fell behind on utility bill and rent payments. Eventually, his gas and electric were shut off.
“I called around everywhere. Churches, everywhere. No one could help,” he said. “I didn’t know what I was going to do, because my gas and electric were off.” Then someone – he can’t recall who – suggested he call the United Way 211 Helpline.
“211 was a lifesaver,” he said.
The 211 care coordinator who answered the phone referred David to a local agency. But David is not internet savvy, so he needed help completing online applications for assistance.
The care coordinator “helped me all the way through the applications,” David said. “He got everything in motion.” David’s utilities were restored and his application for rent assistance was submitted.
“I wouldn’t have been able to do it without him,” David said.