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The three-day back-to-school tax holiday begins at 12:01 a.m. Friday, Aug. 1, and ends at midnight Sunday, Aug. 3. No Florida sales tax or local option tax will be collected on sales of clothing, shoes and some accessories priced at $100 or less per item, on certain school supplies selling for $15 or less, and on the first $750 for computers and accessories. Click here for a complete list of items.

 

In June, 2-1-1 Brevard helpline specialists logged 979 calls related to primary health care.
June 2014 Snapshot

 

Image of 2-1-1 searchSuppose you want to find help for a friend or relative who lives in Jackson County in the Panhandle? Or in Clay County in Northeast Florida? Or in any other county in the Sunshine State?
Now you can visit www.my211florida.org and search by city, county or ZIP code to find all 2-1-1 databases of community resources and the state.
A United Healthcare grant paid for the “portal” through the Florida Alliance of Information and Referral Services.
2-1-1 Brevard is a member of FLAIRS.

 

Sunmer Breakspot logoFree lunches for children will be served beginning in June throughout Brevard County as part of Florida’s Summer BreakSpot and United Way of Brevard’s Feed and Read.
Click here for BreakSpot and here for Feed and Read.

Meals are available to anyone 18 or younger. Breakfast also will be served at some sites.
Opening dates for BreakSpot sites vary; Feed and Read sites begin opening June 9. Ending dates for the meal programs vary by site.
Parents also may dial 2-1-1 for information on times and locations.
2-1-1′s throughout Florida contract with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to provide information on Summer BreakSpot.
2-1-1 Brevard is a United Way partner agency.

 
Stephanie Bryant of Brevard County Community Action Agency.

Stephanie Bryant of the Brevard County Community Action Agency.

Update: 2-1-1 Brevard helpline specialists have visited five more agencies since their “field trips” started in February. They are:

Next up: Central Brevard Sharing Center.

Previous post: Bread and pastries free for the taking on table in the lobby. Boxes of cereal, cans of beans, bottles of shampoo in a storage room in the back. Rooms with bunks and trundle beds and just a few homey touches like a rug or a  quilt.
Four staff members of 2-1-1 Brevard spent part of a recent afternoon touring and learning more about the Salvation Army of Melbourne, where specialists made 3,045 referrals in the past fiscal year.

Pridmore Center room

One of the eight sleeping rooms at the Salvation Army’s Pridmore Center for Women and Children.


Salvation Army Facebook

The “field trip” was the first of a monthly series of site visits to agencies that receive high numbers of referrals from 2-1-1 Brevard.

“The more we know about an agency, the better we can make appropriate referrals,” said Christina Lefler, the helpline supervisor who was among the staff members on the tour.

“After we’ve visited a location and talked face to face with staff, we can better understand what they can and can’t do.”

Communications Manager Belinda Stewart is in charge of setting up the site visits as part of her role in promoting positive community relations.

“Salvation Army South is third on our list of most-frequent referrals with almost 7 percent of all referrals last year,” Stewart said. “So it was an obvious pick for one of our first visits.”

2-1-1 staff toured the Social Services area, including the food pantry, and the Sue M. Pridmore Center for Women and Children.

“We like to thank Capt. Juan Guadalupe and his staff, especially supervisor Joyce Cox, for welcoming us and letting us know how much they value our partnership in helping people,” Stewart said.

More referrals were made last year to Catholic Charities and Brevard County’s Community Action Agency, where visits are scheduled in March and April, respectively.

Learn more about the Salvation Army of Melbourne on the web and Facebook.

 

Wayne Ivey at June VOAD meetingBrevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey spoke June 12 to about 40 representatives of Brevard Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, including four staff members of 2-1-1 Brevard.
Ivey recalled lessons learned from two months as a commander in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 in Louisiana and about his agency’s role before, during and after a hurricane on the Space Coast.

2-1-1 Brevard was represented by executive director Libby Donoghue, community resource coordinator Lakesha McLaughlin, helpline supervisor Tim Carroll and communications manager Belinda Stewart, who also was elected VOAD secretary at the meeting.

2-1-1 Brevard is active in disaster preparation and is supported financially by Brevard County Emergency Management as a partner in providing public information in case of disaster.

Brevard VOAD is a local coalition of more than 50 nonprofit, governmental, faith-based and service organizations and businesses that want to help in the community in the event of a disaster, such as hurricane, flood or wildfire. Learn more at www.brevardvoad.org or www.facebook.com/BrevardVOAD.

 

May was Mental Health Awareness Month, and helpline specialists logged 958 calls related to mental health or substance abuse.
May 2014 Snapshot

 

In April, at least 24 percent of callers to 2-1-1 Brevard were between the ages of 50 and 59, while 21 percent of callers were 40-49.
April 2014 Snapshot

 

amazon_account
Update: To celebrate Father’s Day, Amazon will donate an extra $5 per purchase to 2-1-1 Brevard through Sunday, June 15.
Through the  AmazonSmile program, Amazon.com donates 0.5 percent of what you spend year-round to 2-1-1 Brevard.
Click here to shop and support 2-1-1.
2-1-1 Brevard earned $10 for the first quarter of 2014, with a little bonus from Amazon. Thanks to all who helped!

 
Sheriff Wayne Ivey

Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey.

Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey will speak on “preparing for disaster” as the special guest of Brevard Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) for its regular meeting on Thursday, June 12.
The start of hurricane season is June 1.
“We don’t want to scare people, but it’s important that we not get lazy,” said Belinda Stewart, 2-1-1 communications manager, who serves on the VOAD planning team. “Being prepared can make the difference between safety and tragedy.”

Ivey also will speak about the role of his agency in community emergency.
The meeting begins at 9 a.m. and is open to the public. It will be held at the Florida Solar Energy Center, 1679 Clearlake Road, which is next to the Eastern Florida State College campus in Cocoa.
Click here to learn more about Sheriff Ivey and the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office.
Click here for the VOAD Facebook page and here for its website.

 

By The Numbers

  • 39,497: Number of calls answered in 2012-13
  • 44,126: Number of referrals made in the year
  • 36: Percent of referrals made for basic needs, such as food
  • 22,071: Number of visits to online database

Spotlight

Check out 2-1-1 mobile app

2-1-1 Brevard has a free app for searching our online database from your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. You can download from iTunes. The version for Android devices is being developed. Click Here to Learn More