The Phoenix Foundation of the Boundary Communities is updating the Vital Signs report.
The short survey they are going to be putting out ought to be placed on the meeting agenda of every organization in the Boundary. From municipal councils to minor hockey and PAC groups—every group stands to benefit by taking the time to have input into the updated report.
The information has a local focus, something often lacking in our 200 channel digital universe. Eleven interest areas are considered: transportation, health, arts, gap between rich and poor, safety, food security, work, education, housing, belonging and leadership, and environment.
Each of the eleven sections of the report purposefully included a section called youth voice. This is a rare and welcome opportunity for communication between the different age groups.
One often hears that we must find ways to make it attractive for families with children to make the Boundary their home. Thanks to the Vital Signs report we now have an indication of what we can do to make the area more attractive for youth. After all—why would parents choose the Boundary if the needs of their children would be better met elsewhere?
The report also has the potential to for us to see if things are improving or not. The 2009 report pointed out that in 2005 24 per cent of Grand Forks children (17 and younger) were living in poverty. Greenwood was at 10 per cent. Five years ago the report stated that “the percentage of children living in poverty has since likely increased across the Boundary due to the economic downturn.”
The two-page survey takes only minutes to complete, but has the potential to add much to the self-knowledge of our communities.