Innovation Initiative Spotlight: One-e-App Catalyzes Community Change

The Innovation Initiative (I2) Award can spark lasting change in the community.

In 2009, Social Interest Solutions (SIS), a mission-driven nonprofit organization dedicated to leveraging technology innovation to improve consumers’ access to eligible health and human services, was awarded the I2 Award to bring One-e-App to San Diego County.

One-e-App is an online enrollment software from SIS that connects to multiple social services databases to facilitate benefit eligibility for low-income clients. The service streamlines the application process through one electronic app that collects and stores information, screens and delivers data electronically and can be used by both providers assisting their clients as well as individuals on their own.

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While other regional nonprofits, such as the Council of Community Clinics and HomeStart, utilized One-e-App, it was 2-1-1 that successfully adopted the technology. 2-1-1 San Diego—a past mission support grantee who serves as a 24-hour information hub for the community—integrated the service as a supplement to its existing resources.

Since One-e-App consolidated applications for programs such as WIC, earned income tax credits, and food stamps, 2-1-1 was able to utilize its potential and assist callers as well as connect with the County Health and Human Services Agency with an acceptable electronic signature. This effort completed over 17,700 applications, of which almost 10,000 were accepted, bringing in approximately $16.8 million in client benefits and $30 million in economic stimulus to San Diego County.

oea_logo_plain_png_0In addition to the these economic benefits to the counties—and to the state as a whole—it also positioned 2-1-1 as experts in online enrollment. As a result, 2-1-1 San Diego has expanded its role in Benefits Enrollment and has begun accepting applications for Covered California over the phone. This is an invaluable service, especially for those with limited access to transportation.

Even better, One-e-App became a model for other programs.

Recognizing the convenience and efficiency of a one-stop shop for applying to a variety of benefit programs, other services emerged in the region which used One-e-App’s model and applied the technology in a workable, intuitive manner.

One-e-App catalyzed a real change in our community and has shown that sometimes innovation begins with an idea or a model and branches outward, creating a web of useful, applicable resources for the community.

Nancy-BigSmileThe application period for this year’s I2 Award closed May 6, but I still recommend you visit this page to learn more and to see some of the work done by other nonprofits with its help in past years.

What are some ways you can inspire widespread change in the San Diego and Imperial Counties? I’d love to hear from you and learn about the work you’re doing to make our region a healthier, happier place!

Nancy Sasaki, Executive Director, Alliance Healthcare Foundation

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