The United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County has awarded CI:Now $75,000 for 2017-2018. A portion of that award will go toward data support for United Way’s own community data needs, with the balance intended to fund tools and services that help our community access and use data for better decisions and more effective action. The United Way has long understood the value of making better data available to everyone and has invested in our community data capacity for 20 years and counting, and we are so grateful for their steadfast support.
As CI:Now rounds out our second decade of democratizing data, we’re excited to announce that we have transitioned to a 501(c)3 nonprofit structure. Nonprofit status simplifies the grant and contract arrangements that support our growing operations, while preserving community ownership and leadership via our volunteer Board of Directors, formerly called the Policy Group.
United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County, one of CI:Now’s late 1990s founders and its fiscal agent and funder in every year since, remains a strong working partner in our efforts to turn data into information Texas communities can use to make our world better. CI:Now’s core staffing will remain with the UTHealth School of Public Health in San Antonio, a great academic partner to our community focus. CI:Now will continue to serve as a local partner in the National Neighborhood Indicators Project and a member of the Community Indicators Consortium and the San Antonio Nonprofit Council.
The National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership included CI:Now and the Alamo Regional Data Alliance (ARDA) in its new guide Empowering the Public and Nonprofit Sectors with Data and Technology. More information about ARDA’s data and tech training agenda can be found in its draft Community Strategy.
The Center for Health Care Services, Bexar County’s local mental health authority, has contracted CI:Now for data support to its US DHHS SAMHSA-funded Primary and Behavioral Health Care Integration initiative. CI:Now’s role in this work is to link integrated care patient records from multiple sources and compile care files and performance measures related to consumer characteristics, service utilization, risk and protective factors, and health outcomes.
CI:Now’s Laura McKieran presented as part of the Resilient Neighborhoods panel at the 2017 Mayor’s Housing Summit. Environmental, economic, and social stressors can all have a negative impact on individuals, families and social networks, and neighborhoods and cities. But data can be used to understand current conditions, historical trends and likely future scenarios, relationships among issues, and demographic and geographic patterns, helping us prevent and mitigate both acute and chronic disasters from flash to floods to persistent intergenerational poverty.
Laura McKieran participated in a panel at the May 2017 National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership meeting on Advancing the Role of Neighborhoods in Health. Her presentation focused on how partners can work with health information exchanges (HIEs) to integrate data on person and place to assess neighborhood and population conditions, target and evaluate interventions, and explore and show relationships between neighborhood well-being and individual well-being.
The United Way of San Antonio and Bexar County has contracted with CI:Now to compile and map a number of indicators of child and family well-being, including EDI kinder-readiness, third-grade reading, family income and poverty, family educational attainment, residential mobility, family violence, child abuse and neglect reports and victims, late or no prenatal care, employment instability, military service, and VIA bus stops and routes. Most of the maps will be static (pdf) thematic maps with overlays, but CI:Now will also build an interactive scatterplot tool to allow United Way to explore relationships among issues by zip code.
On May 9, 2017 CI:Now’s Laura McKieran presented on the new Alamo Regional Data Alliance (ARDA) to the Alamo Area GIS User Group, introducing ARDA’s vision, new community strategy, and ways to get involved.
CI:Now’s Laura McKieran introduced CI:Now and the Alamo Regional Data Alliance (ARDA) to the San Antonio Funders Group on April 6, 2017. The Funders Group learned about ARDA’s new community strategy, what work CI:Now is already doing in these areas, what remains to be done, and the roles local foundations and philanthropists can play in improving lives by establishing and supporting a culture of data-driven action.