Silicon Valley Community Foundation (“SVCF”) has announced the funding of 34 Santa Clara County organizations to support census outreach in the local community. The County of Santa Clara made an unprecedented investment in Census 2020, with a goal to achieve a fair, accurate count. The funds that they allocated for community outreach have been disbursed to the community through SVCF. SVCF has granted a total of $1.2 million to these organizations, which will work to disseminate programs, services and campaigns to ensure that hard-to-count populations in Santa Clara County are counted in the 2020 Census.
“Our grantees already work with hard-to-count populations and are trusted by the community,” said Anne Im, SVCF’s immigration program officer. “These organizations work closely with low income families, immigrants and many other groups that are at risk of not being counted in the census. We are proud to offer funding and training to help them reach, educate, and galvanize our community to participate in the census.”
The 2020 Census poses many challenges. For the first time, the U.S. Census Bureau primarily will collect questionnaires online and will reduce door-to-door outreach efforts and canvassing. Experts fear that many residents may not fill out the questionnaire due to language barriers or unconventional housing, and that immigrants may not participate because of fears stoked by the federal government’s tightening immigration policies.
Recognizing that these hurdles may have a detrimental effect on overall census participation, SVCF adopted the 2020 Census as an institutional priority, citing the importance of an accurate and fair count of all Californians.
“The census is so much more than just a head count,” said Nicholas Kuwada, Santa Clara County's 2020 Census program manager. “It is the standard of information that determines other factors that affect our communities, such as how billions of dollars in federal funding for public services and programs are allocated, or how many congressional seats our state receives.”
This is the second round of grantmaking that SVCF has initiated for census-related efforts. In 2019, the Bay Area Census Funders Collaborative – of which SVCF is a member – provided grants totaling $3.3 million to 130 nonprofits organizations throughout the Bay Area for census education and outreach in hard-to-count populations. Of that total, SVCF granted more than $1.9 million to 70 organizations in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties for these efforts.
For a complete list of nonprofit organizations that received funding from SVCF's 2020 Census: Santa Clara County RFP, click here. For quotes from some of the grantee organizations about their work and the importance of these grants, click here.
For more information about how to ensure a complete and accurate 2020 Census, visit https://www.siliconvalleycf.org/census2020.