Jennifer Newcomer

Community Facts Is Expanding Statewide

Since Community Facts originally launched in 2004, individuals and organizations have been accessing free, neighborhood-level data about the health and well-being of Denver-area families and communities. In 2016, Shift Research Lab expanded Community Facts’ focus from a historically Denver-centric one to a seven-county, regional view so that it could be more responsive to changing demographics and economic conditions in metro Denver. Now, Shift has the opportunity to expand Community Facts’ footprint to include data and information for the entire state, helping to provide insights into communities across Colorado. Learn more below about the expansion and how we plan to support social change efforts across the state. 

Why is Community Facts expanding statewide?

Community Facts’ statewide expansion was inspired by Shift’s partnership with The Colorado Trust to understand and highlight how social determinants of health are impacting Colorado communities. Shift, Change Matrix, and The Colorado Trust are working together to create a web-based open data platform, the Colorado Equity Compass, that combines Colorado-focused, community-level health equity indicators with storytelling to help bring to life the experiences of residents in communities experiencing inequity. As part of this work, Shift will leverage statewide data available through Community Facts, along with other resources that are being developed for the project.

By further expanding its flagship tool, Shift can better support social change efforts across the state, and we are excited to provide this added resource to the community.

How is Shift ensuring that Community Facts remains a community-driven tool? 

Community Facts will continue to be a tool designed by and for users working to advance social change in Colorado. To ensure that this latest expansion meets the needs of users working statewide, we are engaging stakeholders working in organizations across the state to ensure that the tool is tailored to meet the needs of communities. Shift will use the findings from our stakeholder engagement to evolve the Community Facts experience and ensure that it meets the needs of its users.

What kind of data will be included in the statewide expansion of Community Facts? 

As part of our statewide stakeholder engagement process, Shift is working to determine the different indicators and functionalities that will be most beneficial to communities with diverse data needs. Community Facts’ statewide expansion will include the standard, neighborhood-level datasets already included in the current tool, including indicators related to the health and well-being of communities. However, there will be additional datasets and functionalities included that address the specific needs identified through the stakeholder engagements.

Does Shift have the capacity to expand Community Facts statewide? 

Shift already maintains a longitudinal database of statewide datasets, and we plan to use our strong network of partners to continue enhancing the data that will be incorporated into Community Facts. In addition, we are activating a statewide network of Community Facts stewards that can champion the tool in their communities and provide technical assistance to those who are less families with how to utilize the tool. 

How will this impact Shift’s research, analysis and capacity building work? 

For more than 25 years, Shift has been provided reliable, unbiased data, research and capacity building support to inform social change initiatives happening across metro Denver region. Although the Community Facts tool is expanding statewide, Shift will continue to focus on providing research and analysis around the social and economic issues that impact metro Denver in particular.



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