Gannon, United Way To Collaborate on Massive Human Services Directory Project
Posted: August 9, 2013
For the past 26 years, students from Gannon University's social
work program have collected information on all Erie County social
service agencies and support groups for the Gannon University Human
Service Directory that has been an invaluable resource for persons
Times have changed and so has the way information is accessed,
so the directory will be developed into an online resource thanks
to a partnership between Gannon and United Way of Erie County that
was announced today.
When the directory was last published in 2010, it weighed-in at
229 pages, with entries for hundreds of agencies and
programs. This year, through an independent research class in
Gannon's College of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences, the
directory will be updated and placed on the Gannon website to allow
free and easy access by all Erie County residents who need it.
"This signature project supports one of the goals in our
Strategic Plan, which is to engage in the community," stated Gannon
President Keith Taylor, Ph.D. "We are responding to a need in the
community - quick and easy access to supportive services that are
readily available to help build a stronger neighborhood. This
project is also a perfect fit our Erie-GAINS (Erie-Gannon Alliances
to Improve Neighborhood Sustainability) initiative. The
community gains and our students gain by using their research
skills to provide a document that will impact the community in a
Simultaneously, United Way of Erie County is working to bring PA
211 service to Erie County and NW Pennsylvania in 2014. PA
211 is a free telephone hotline that provides confidential
information about food, housing, employment, mental health
services, healthcare and other health and human services. PA
211 is part of a nationwide 211 network that now serves 90% of the
nation's population. Information from the Gannon directory
will be a major source for the 211 database.
"The need for a better way to link Erie County residents to
available programs and services has consistently been mentioned as
a priority in countless local meetings by both social service
professionals and residents alike," said Bill Jackson, United Way
president & chief professional officer. "Today, Gannon
University and United Way of Erie County are taking a major step
forward in meeting this important community need."
Data collection for the new edition is underway, and county
social service agencies will be asked to submit information about
their organization, including an agency profile and list of
programs and services offered.
Organizations should receive this request via email or via U.S.
mail. If an organization does not receive the request, they
may contact Gannon University's Social Work Department at (814)
871-5574 to begin the data entry process.
Agencies are encouraged to complete their information by Friday,
August 30, 2013.