From transportation to housing to the environment, effecting real, lasting community change requires data.
Sometimes that data comes from hard statistics – numbers of riders, or park visitors or the average cost of rent. Other times, it’s people’s impressions that impact decision-makers, such as whether they feel safe in an area, or the level of connection felt among neighbours.
But some of the most effective change comes when we consider both, and it’s with that in mind that the Victoria Foundation embarks this week on the 2020 Vital Signs survey.
The 15th annual survey, running June 1 to July 1, invites residents to weigh in about what’s working well in their community and what could use a little help.
Results of the survey, paired with local statistics, form the basis of the annual Vital Signs report, an annual community check-up that measures the vitality of the region, identifies concerns, and supports action on issues that are critical to quality of life throughout the Capital Region. This well-rounded picture is used by local decision-makers and the Foundation to take action of issues that affect community well-being.
On your computer or on your phone, participating is easy
The Foundation team reviews the Vital Signs survey process each year to identify potential improvements, and this year’s survey is easier and faster, but also more personal in its scope.
Previously, respondents would be asked to comment on things they might have had no personal experience with, explains Rob Janus, the Foundation’s Director of Communications.
“This year we’ve reworked the questions so it’s less abstract and more personal,” Janus says. “And to provide the most current reflection of the community, questions about COVID-19 are also part of the survey – asking how the impacts of the virus are affecting people in the region.”
You can make a difference
The Victoria Vital Signs survey is a unique opportunity to contribute to discussions about improving our region, says Sandra Richardson, Victoria Foundation CEO.
“As with every Vital Signs survey, we want as many people as possible to take the survey and share their input,” Richardson says. “In turn, that greater understanding will let us better support local needs.”
Due to the impacts of COVID-19, the survey is only open for one month this year, closing on July 1. To participate, simply visit victoriafoundation.bc.ca and follow the link to the Vital Signs survey, which takes just about 10 minutes to complete.
Established in 1936, the Victoria Foundation manages charitable gifts from donors whose generosity allows them to create permanent, income-earning funds, with proceeds distributed as grants for charitable or educational purposes.