Showing posts from November, 2014

Connections, The Airs Newsletter November/December 2014

The Alliance of Information and Referral Systems (AIRS) has released the latest issue of Connections, the AIRS newsletter. This issue covers such topics as 2015 AIRS Conference, choosing the right tools for I&R texting communications, and more. Read Connections by clicking the link.

2014 MedSurplus Alliance Conference

On November 3rd and 4th, more than thirty representatives of Medical Surplus Recovery Organizations (MSROs), donors of surplus medical equipment and consumables, and academics met to explore the challenges and benefits that building a working alliance may have for individual organizations, donors, recipients, and the field of medical surplus recovery over all.   Our mission?  Stop the flow of useless and inappropriate medical supplies that are donated to developing countries where they become a burden and cause more harm than healing. 

Medical Surplus Recovery Organizations (MSROs) are non-profits that collect quality medical donations from hospitals and manufacturers to distribute to healthcare providers in developing countries. MSROs are fueled by generous donors, skilled staff and devoted volunteers working hard to provide hope and resources to underserved populations during times of medical need.  The conference participants ship nearly 1000 40 ft. containers each year.  Their work benefits people and the planet by redistributing existing resources to people and places that need them. 

The MedSurplus Alliance was formed to support MSRO operations and to change the hearts and minds of donors regarding what can and should be donated.  It’s a tough challenge, we know!  However, in ‘The Answer to How is Yes:  Acting on What Matters”, Peter Block asserts that when we are driven by clear and powerful purpose, we find ways around the obstacles that arise. VisonLink also believes that we’re better together than working alone.  The MedSurplus Alliance is committed to focusing on its mission and serving its stakeholders while honoring the different strengths, operational realities, and approaches among them.

Would you like to learn more or join us?  Please visit to read the MSRO Code of Conduct and learn about the coming MSRO Accreditation program.  
Please share your ideas or suggestions to strengthen the conversation!

Lori Warrens
Senior Director of Community Solutions

National Information and Referral Services Day

In 2011 the Senate passed S.RES.241 declaring November 16 as "National Information and Referral Services Day" at the request of the Alliance of Information and Referral Services (AIRS).

Information and Referral connects people with services to find a solution to a variety of issues about housing, food, legal issues, family support, health care, jobs, schooling and much more. One such services is 2-1-1, a phone number used to access information about community services. 2-1-1- call centers are initiated by United Ways and Information Referral Agencies. In 2013, 2-1-1 services in the United States assisted more than 15.6 million callers ( and are currently available in 90% of the United States. VisionLink, provider of CommunityOS, is honored to support nearly one out of every four calls made to 2-1-1 across the nation. 

November 16 VisionLink celebrates National Information and Referral Services Day with the goal of gaining public awareness and the importance of information and referral services across the nation.