Calumet Census Champions share why it’s important to get counted

Deborah Daley and Tanga Morris, both Family Coaches in the Family Works program at our Calumet Center’s Altgeld Gardens site, are champions of Metropolitan’s community outreach around the Census. They shared their perspectives on the importance of the Census, and how they’ve been encouraging their families to complete theirs.

(If you haven’t yet, visit my2020census.gov to complete your Census!)

Census Champion Deborah Daley

Deborah shares:

Why is it important for you to work with your clients to complete the census?

It is important for me that I work with my clients to complete the Census because this is a one in ten-year opportunity.  My clients are a part of my/our community.  Our community needs to be counted so that our children and neighbors are given a fair share of resources.  Working with my clients will give them a sense of pride.  They will know that their voice made a difference and they in turn can pass on the knowledge about the Census to other communities.

What strategies are you using to get clients involved?

The strategy I have used to get my clients involved is educating them about what it is and why it is important that their voice is heard/counted. A personal and honest approach is what works best for my clients. People are willing to be counted or heard when they know how their family, community, and themselves will benefit in a positive manner. I feel a sense of pride/honor knowing that I am making a difference in the lives of many people for the ten years to come & decades more if necessary.

Have you encountered any challenges? How are you moving past those challenges?

A challenge I have encountered is helping my clients to understand that there is a deadline that needs to be met. Having the Census due during this pandemic [adds to] many other obligations on the plates of many of my clients. My clients are worried about bills, food, job security, and safety of their loved ones. I use this information to let them know that the Census can bring resources to their community that can assist them now and in the future. Their voice matters and the Census needs to record/document these matters.

Why is it important to your clients in particular that they are counted in the 2020 census?

It is important for my clients in particular to be counted in the 2020 Census because of the funding for resources. The community that my clients live in would benefit from advancement in transportation, education, grocery stores, and gain more representatives assigned to community based on population. 2020 is the year my clients’ voices will be heard and demand changes.

Tanga shares: 

Why is it important for you to work with your clients to complete the census?

Our clients must complete the Census in order to make sure their voices are heard in shaping their community and bringing resources that are available to them in the community.

What has it been like? What strategies are you using to get clients involved?

You have to be the change that you want to see happen in your community. So completed the Census and share with clients.

Have you encountered any challenges? How are you moving past those challenges?

Most clients have completed the Census and want changes and their voices validated.

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