The Ventura County Complete Count Committee will lead a Census Caravan on Saturday, August 22. The caravan, which will have the participation of organizations and groups such as the Ventura County Mobile Library, Child Development Resources, and the US Census Bureau, will begin its route in Thousand Oaks at 9:30am and will end in Simi Valley around 3:00pm. The goal for the caravan, which will make its way through most cities in the county, is to encourage participation by residents before the Census ends on September 30.
“The Census Caravan is a fun, yet socially-distant safe activity that we can do together as a community to help promote the Census,” said Vanessa Bechtel, President and CEO of Ventura County Community Foundation and Co-Chair of the Complete Count Committee.
More than 72% of Ventura County residents have participated in the Census. The County is currently ranked number 1 in response rate among Southern California counties and continues to trend above the national average. Achieving the highest percentage possible for response rate ensures that necessary funding is provided to local communities to support essential program such as early childhood education, healthcare services, and infrastructure maintenance. In terms of largest hard-to-count populations, Ventura County ranks 59th out of 3,000 counties across the U.S.
“Now more than ever we need to get the word out about the importance of the Census,” said Bechtel. “The Census will help inform funding for public and social services for the next 10 years. So many people thought that the Census was over on April 1, but we have until September 30 to get a full and accurate count of Ventura County.”
Through the collective effort of the County of Ventura, the Ventura County Community Foundation, and over 150 local area nonprofit organizations, government agencies and individuals, the Ventura County Complete Count Committee has conducted outreach since January 2019 to prepare and promote awareness about the Census. The caravan is part of ongoing efforts to raise awareness and educate the community about the local services that benefit from the federal funding that is awarded through a complete count. Throughout the awareness campaign, which complements the efforts made by the State and U.S. Census Bureau, significant emphasis has been placed on reaching those considered hard to count.
To learn more about the Census, please visit the local website dedicated to making sure everyone gets counted in the county at www.census.ventura.org.