In September, Yspaniola carried out our second community census in Batey Libertad. The purpose of the census is to gather accurate data on demographics, economic status, level of education, and legal documentation status of the residents of the Batey.
Our first census, in 2016, provided crucial information and insight into the issues affecting the community. This is important to us, as community participation is at the heart of Yspaniola's work. During the planning stages of the census project, we organized a meeting with key community leaders, since their support and collaboration on such a wide-scale community project was essential to our success.
One participant at the meeting emphasized the importance of having reliable data about the community, so that it is possible to properly address the needs of local residents. We committed to sharing a Spanish translation of the final report with both the local Neighbourhood Committee ("Junta de Vecinos"), as well as another nonprofit that works on health and community construction projects locally, to help inform their work.
Since 2016, Batey Libertad has visibly grown in size, so we wanted to capture updated information about the families that make up the community and their living conditions. In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic had a severe impact on many people's economic situation, so we also hoped to collect information about this vital aspect of residents day-to-day lives.
Our team of 11 censors hired from the community took part in a one-day traning session, and bright and early on the morning of October 1st, they set out to do a fantastic job. Our motivated team of censors completed the census in two days, surveying 253 houses in that time.
We are now working to synthesize the data that was collected and a final census report will be released in February 2023.