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Step 2

Assess the resources, needs and desires of the community. Hold listening sessions, conduct surveys and interviews, gather data from government websites, and use other means to collect useful information about your community. Also, take time to understand both the real and perceived challenges and opportunities.

Expectations:

Assess the resources, needs and desires of the community to better understand the real and perceived challenges and opportunities. Assessments can be done using both quantitative (OSEDA, government websites, surveys) and qualitative methods (key informant interviews, focus groups, in-person interviews).

Develop and publicize assessment/survey results.

For existing partnerships, revisit past assessments completed by the partnership. Is there a strong understanding of the resources, needs and desires of the community to better understand the real and perceived challenges and opportunities? If not, discuss and design additional assessments.

Resources:

Community Survey – example from Dent County
This is an example of a high quality survey used to assess the resources, needs and desires of an HLI community. This particular survey was developed and used in Dent County.

The Community Toolbox – community assessment
This link provides extremely valuable information and tips on thoroughly assessing the needs and resources of your community.

Vision to Action
The Community Assessment chapter (pages 65-86) provides more information on what community needs and resources should be assessed and how to properly gather that information.

Healthy Communities Toolkit
The following three links provide high quality examples and information on three important areas of community resource, needs and desires assessment:

Office of Social and Economic Data Analysis
This is a link to the Missouri Office of Social and Economic Data Analysis. This website makes research and information conducted in the state available to you. Valuable information on community demographics and needs, decision support, collaboration, economic development, education and public health is available.

USDA Economic Research Service Food Atlas
This website allows a search to be conducted on specific communities. This Food Atlas provides a spatial overview of a community’s current ability to access healthy food and its success in doing so. Through this website you can assemble county-level statistics on food choices, health and well-being, and community characteristics.

Walkability Checklist – How Walkable is Our Community?
Take a walk and use this checklist to rate your neighborhood’s walkability. Includes information and resources on ways to improve problems in your neighborhood.

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