Jim Harris, president of the Campbell River Community Founation and chair of the Vital Signs committee, presents the 2016 Vital Signs Report. He expects this years will be even more detailed as there will be focus groups and they will be incorporating the new census data. Photo by Jocelyn Doll/Campbell River Mirror

Campbell River Community Foundation starting work on the 2018 Vital Signs Report

The Campbell River Community Foundation is preparing for a bigger and better Vital Signs report this year.

“We will be utilising those same issue areas in the 2016 report in the 2018 report and providing a little bit of an update on what’s changed…what’s stayed the same across those different indicators,” said Maggie Hodge Kwan, project coordinator.

The foundation released the first report in 2016. It looks at key indicators from census data as well as information gathered via a community survey and, new this year, focus groups to paint a picture of Campbell River’s strengths and weaknesses.

“It leverages local knowledge to measure local community vitality and to support collaborative action towards improving quality of life,” Hodge Kwan said.

The report is packaged in a grab-and-go booklet and covers everything from housing and the income gap, to education and health.

According to Jim Harris, president of the Community Foundation and chair of the project committee, the 2016 report was used by various community organizations including the Chamber of Commerce, the Tourist Information Centre as well as the city.

“With Vital Signs we are aiming to give our community members, our stakeholders, our non-profit organizations and agencies, our elected officials, we’re aiming to give them all that nice packet of essential information so that they can really just have a deeper understanding of the community and so that their actions can be guided by that data,” Hodge Kwan said.

This year, with the addition of the 2016 long form census results, Hodge Kwan and Harris are hopeful they will be able to put together an even more in-depth and informative overview of what is going on in Campbell River.

With these insights as a guide, there is potential for change based on facts to be made.

“We want to leverage the excitement and enthusiasm and interest that people have about their communities and we want to help inform conversations and actions by presenting some of that data that can clarify and help people formulate opinions,” Hodge Kwan said.

The focus groups will be taking place over two weeks this month, but are not open to the public. Through April and March the community foundation will be recruiting people to take the survey.

The document will be released in October.

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