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

Midway Children’s Center Site Director Seth Rich and Family Support Worker Adriana Hernandez 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 Champions Seth and Adriana

Seth and Adriana share:

Why is being counted important to you and your clients?

We understand the count will be used to determine how much federal funding our neighborhoods and communities will receive for infrastructure, education, social service programming and political representation. Since the census happens every 10 years, we will live with the results for the next decade.

Therefore, we understand the impact and implications and believe that having our communities counted is very important!

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

It has been good! We are always trying to get our families involved in conversations, activities, meetings, and advocacy work. While we were closed we made weekly well-being calls to families. During these check-ins, we asked parents if they completed the census. Approximately 90% of our parents told us they completed the census.

Some strategies we have used:

  • Teachers and Family Workers have called all of our parents to ask if they have completed the census. During these calls we informed parents of the importance of the census, how to take the census, and that responding to the census would not be detrimental to their immigration status.
  • We placed Census 2020 information/flyers in food boxes that were distributed to families.
  • We have discussed the census during Parent Policy Committee Meetings, the Parent Café, Parent Workshops, and weekly check-ins.

Have we encountered any challenges? How are you moving past the challenge?

One challenge we faced was addressing some of our immigrant families’ fears of filling out and responding to the census.

We have had individual conversations with parents to inform them the goal is to get everyone counted. We also try to let families know that there are some legal safeguards in place to ensure their safety in answering the questions.

A few of our Midway Children’s Center parents show they count!