Community Needs Assessment

If your organization wants to have a positive impact on a community or focus area, understanding top needs is key. Maybe what you need is a needs assessment. A JVA needs assessment can pinpoint assets to build upon, as well as gaps to be filled.

An approach tailored to your needs

Our multifaceted team can help you get answers. Maybe you’re researching a single, narrow topic for a large area. For example, who receives nutrition assistance in your county, and what barriers prevent eligible people from enrolling? Or perhaps it’s a broad topic for a small area (what challenges do low-income residents in my ZIP code face?). Maybe it’s a combination. We have extensive experience in conducting needs assessments using mixed methods. And we know how to gather diverse input to ensure the many voices of your community are engaged and heard.

JVA will work with you to identify and develop the right tools for your community or focus area. We offer a flexible array of services to lead or support your organization in conducting a community needs assessment. For example, we can develop, implement and analyze multiple tools, such as environmental scans, interviews, focus groups and surveys, to assess and understand your community and its needs. The result will be a snapshot of the strengths and challenges in your community and our recommendations on how to meet needs, complement assets and address gaps.

Experience with diverse communities

Our staff has the ability to reach populations through collaborative community approaches and to tailor methods aligned with audiences. This ensures that we incorporate multiple perspectives. We may reach out to anyone from policymakers to organizational leaders, from community members to service providers. Furthermore, we work to see that those providing feedback feel respected and valued. JVA also applies a rigorous lens to these assessments (e.g., we establish representative sample sizes and build on best-practice literature with tool design).

Over the years, JVA has conducted community needs assessments for countless partners in the areas of aging, early childhood, health, homelessness, human services, hunger, youth services and many more. This broad range of experience has allowed us to gain a deep understanding of the best approaches to elicit and gather useful and valuable information from diverse communities while respecting residents and their personal and cultural sensitivities.

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