About Us

For over 20 years First Call For Help has been connecting people in need with the resources that can help.

First Call For Help was established through a coordinated community effort that began in 1997. After two years of collaboration, the helpline became operational in August 1999. We continue to operate this free and confidential helpline as well as an online database, making it easy for anyone to locate resources in Cape Girardeau, Scott, Stoddard, Bollinger and Perry counties.

Our helpline has been made possible by many supporting partners over the years. Our current funding partners are:

  • United Way of Southeast Missouri
  • Cape Girardeau Senior Citizen’s Services Fund Board
  • Southeast Health
  • City of Cape Girardeau
  • City of Jackson

We thank all our current and former supporting partners for their support throughout the years. Our program would not be possible without you!

We would also like to thank our funding partners that helped make this website possible. Many thanks to Community Foundation of the Ozarks and Homestate Health for supporting our website creation.


First Call For Help is a member of the Alliance of Information and Referral Systems (airs.org) The Alliance of Information and Referral Systems is the professional membership association for community Information and Referral (I&R). AIRS is the sole source for standards, program accreditation and practitioner certification for the I&R sector.

First Call For Help is a free information and referral program covering Cape Girardeau, Scott, Stoddard, Bollinger and Perry Counties in Southeast Missouri. The helpline, 573-334-4357, is a confidential way for anyone in need to locate available resources and services. First Call For Help is the only local comprehensive source of agencies and programs and is available for anyone to call. The helpline is open Monday through Friday, 8:00am to 5:00pm.

When you call, you will be greeted by a friendly caring voice that is ready to talk with you about your needs. After asking some questions to help locate programs that best fit your individual situation, we will search our resource database to locate available services in your area. Referral information will be provided to you including how to access the service and what paperwork you may need. Case assistance can be provided if extra support is needed with the process of obtaining the service.

First Call For Help maintains a database of social service agencies and programs that covers the Southeast Missouri counties of Cape Girardeau, Scott, Stoddard, Bollinger and Perry. Our database contains information on each agency and program including a description of services offered, basic eligibility, required documents, intake procedures, hours of service and contact information. Through our helpline, we can help you find resources for basic needs such as food, clothing and shelter; financial assistance for utilities, housing, medicine and many other financial needs; health and mental health resources; work support and education programs; programs for youth, families and senior citizens and much more. We can also help locate places that accept donations for anyone wanting to donate items in their community.

Yes, the online database contains the same information used by our staff. However, calling the helpline can provide more in depth assistance, problem solving and case assistance to ensure all possible options have been explored for you. Please call us at 573-334-4357 to speak with a caring professional.

No, First Call For Help is available to anyone in need.