Beat Bureaucracy

Find services within the maze of bureaucracies

It can be absurdly difficult to find out what services are available to you from government and non-profit service agencies.

1. Call directory assistance (4-1-1 in most communities) to find out if there is a central information bank. For example, in some areas of the US and Canada you can dial 2-1-1 to learn what programs and services all governments and non-profit agencies provide.

2. Try a web search for the services you need. If you aren't an experienced web searcher, get help from a librarian or someone you know who is good at it.  

3. Ask people and organizations who understand your situation. For example, if you are a single parent, you could ask:

  • other single parents
  • day care staff
  • social services organizations like the YWCA
  • the offices of your elected municipal, state/provincial and federal representatives
  • community centres
  • churches, temples and other places of worship