Whidbey Community Foundation received $10,000 in funding from the Washington Census Equity Fund to support 2020 Census outreach, education and resources to ensure a complete and accurate census count on Whidbey Island.
WCF will provide targeted training opportunities for local nonprofit organizations, informational handouts and a public outreach campaign. Training for nonprofits will include workshops for staff, board members and volunteers that work with hard-to-count individuals from all backgrounds on Whidbey.
The foundation was formed in 2016 to improve the quality of life on Whidbey Island by providing support for the nonprofit sector, assisting donors to build and preserve enduring assets for charitable purposes and meeting community needs through financial awards.
In 2018, WCF provided training for more than 300 nonprofit leaders through workshops held in Langley, Freeland, Coupeville and Oak Harbor.
The Washington Census Equity Fund, a statewide pooled fund managed by Philanthropy Northwest, awarded $800,000 in funding to 28 organizations and tribes supporting communities across Washington.
“We know that an overwhelming number of Washington organizations and tribes are ready to engage their communities on the 2020 Census with early funding to catalyze census planning and mobilization in hard-to-count communities,” Kiran Ahuja, CEO of Philanthropy Northwest, said in a press release.
Each person counted leads to significant resources to support critical programs and services including transportation, health care, education and housing. Potential risks to the 2020 census include a new online format, a lack of testing and a shortage of federal funding for outreach.
The new online innovations increase the potential to omit residents where housing has grown or changed, to overlook those with less computer literacy or broadband access, and to undercount hard-to-count populations.