MOVING FORWARD- Red Deerians are being asked to take part in this year’s Vital Signs survey

Input needed for Vital Signs annual report

The 2011 Vital Signs survey is underway and organizers are looking for input from all community members interested in contributing to the future of Red Deer.

“We use it for our grant making purposes and to determine funding decisions,” said Kristine Bugayong, coordinator for communications and grants with the Red Deer & District Community Foundation.

The survey will also help give a better idea of what main concerns and strengths residents have. In past years, green spaces have ranked high in strengths while homelessness and poverty have been top concerns.

The City also uses the reports for budgeting purposes and other organizations utilize it for planning strategies. The reports started in 2007 so this year will be the fifth report.

“We’re planning on doing more like a historical trending analysis this year,” said Bugayong.

The survey can be completed any time before Aug. 31 online or can be requested as a print copy.

Based on the results from the 2007 survey an environmental wellness grant was created. The environment was the number three concern in that year’s results.

“Environmental Wellness was determined broadly and covers a broad range of organizations for environmental initiatives.”

Homelessness and poverty have remained in the top three concerns since the survey began alongside safety and healthcare.

“The most mentioned thing through the years consistently is people saying that Red Deer has great parks systems and recreational facilities, yet obesity rates have been consistently creeping up.”

Bugayong pointed out the survey is also a great indicator as to what needs improvement as well as what kinds of things are valued in the community on a long-term basis.

The report will be launched Oct. 4 in conjunction with the national report.

There are three questions on the survey this year. One of the questions asks how people rank their overall well-being as well as the reasons why, and the other asks how the overall quality of life in Red Deer rates. Comments can be left during the survey.

“All through the years we’ve gotten all kinds of comments from both ends of the spectrum on every topic.”

The survey is available online at www.rddcf.ca or a print copy can be requested by calling 403-341-6911.

kpalardy@redddeerexpress.com

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