Below is information concerning an important initiative to ensure that children under 6 are properly counted in this year's Census. The initiative is being coordinated by one of The National Association for the Education of Young Children's (NAEYC) national partners, The National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies (NACCRRA).
The census data is used as the basis for distributing more than $400 billion in federal funds each year. Children, especially children under age six, are more likely than any other group to be undercounted. According to the Census Bureau's analysis, young children are missed at a higher rate than any other age group. In the 2000 census, more than one million children under the age of 10 were not counted including more than three-quarters of a million children under the age of five. This amounts to four percent of this population group.
Minority children and children in hard-to-count neighborhoods are most frequently undercounted. Because approximately 20 percent of children live in hard-to-count areas, this results in reduced funding for needy families.
The Census Bureau has partnered with Nickelodeon in an effort to use Dora, the Explorer, to help spread the word and explain the importance of counting each child. The Census Bureau flyer is available in English (http://2010.census.gov/partners/pdf/factSheet_Dora.pdf) and Spanish (http://2010.census.gov/partners/pdf/factSheet_Dora_sp.pdf).
What Can the Early Childhood Community and Other Groups Working With Families Do? --- GET THE WORD OUT!
- Each of you has a network. You can get the word out to child care providers and others who come into contact with young children, who in turn can share the importance of the census to families, especially those with children under age six. Send the link to the Dora flyer! Urge that they hand the flyer out to parents, post it on their bulletin board, post it on the bulletin board at their local grocery store - you get the idea.
- Include information on the census in your newsletter, training sessions, on your web site and in any blogs. Stress the importance of participating in the census. Post the Dora web button on your home page with a link to the Dora flyer or the census bureau 2010 Census campaign at http://2010.census.gov/2010census/.
- Reach out to immigrant communities and stress the need to respond to the census survey.
- Post links to the Dora flyer on Facebook, create a Facebook campaign to "Count Every Child!" or use other social networking strategies.
- Work with your local media and the business community to stress the importance of ensuring an accurate count of young children. Federal funding depends on an accurate count!
Resources to help you spread the word:
NACCRRA has created a web page dedicated to the census count, which includes background information about the count and helpful links to documents that can be used as hand-outs at: http://www.naccrra.org/policy/census-outreach.php. We have also posted the Census Bureau's Dora, the Explorer, web button on our home page (http://www.naccrra.org) as part of the top navigation so it will appear throughout our site regardless of the gateway in which site visitors enter.
Census Bureau Information and Resources:
To add Dora, the Explorer, on your organization's web site or blog to help raise awareness about the importance of counting infants and young children in the 2010 Census, click here: http://2010.census.gov/partners/toolkits/toolkits-dora.php.
Dora, the Explorer, Census Outreach for Children Under Age 6: http://2010.census.gov/partners/pdf/factSheet_Dora.pdf (English version)
http://2010.census.gov/partners/pdf/factSheet_Dora_sp.pdf (Spanish version)
Census Explanation for Kids: http://www.census.gov/schools/census_for_kids/
To see the Census outreach road tour: http://2010.census.gov/2010census/roadtour/