Foundation taking communities’ Vital Signs

Annual checkup fuelled by survey data now being collected

Victoria Foundation CEO Sandra Richardson wants the Vital Signs publication to be an interesting and fairly easy read for residents. Last year’s publication (pictured) saw 50

The Victoria Foundation is looking for input on the state of life in the Capital Region, including the West Shore.

The organization is undertaking its 11th annual Vital Signs community checkup and is asking residents to offer their opinions on such topics as available services, important issues and the overall liveability and well-being of their communities.

The foundation uses the statistical and anecdotal information gleaned through this survey to do planning and determine where to focus its granting programs, which aim to improve quality of life.

“We use Vital Signs as a lens on the communities,” said Victoria Foundation CEO Sandra Richardson, adding that 50,000 copies of the magazine-style report were distributed last year. “I would say the whole of the CRD is represented in this report.”

She sees the West Shore as a particularly interesting element of this data-gathering process, given its rapid growth and changing dynamics.

With the donors to the foundation and the programs that benefit from its work both spread around the region, it’s important to hear from people across Greater Victoria, she said.

“It’s also part of being an inclusive community,” she added.

“Every community has its own challenges, but we’re all part of the bigger whole.”

Making the survey more inclusive is the fact residents who complete the questionnaire do so anonymously.

They can personalize their responses, however, by providing comments on topics of their choosing.

Not only does the report provide important information on which the foundation bases funding decisions, the Vital Signs publication is an interesting read for residents interested in seeing a snapshot of how their communities feel about living in the Capital Region, Richardson said.

“We’ve always wanted (it) to be that report you could pick up and read fairly easily.”

To find a link to the survey, visit If you’d like to participate but don’t have a computer or Internet access, call the foundation at 250-381-5532 for assistance.

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