When our work began in 2014, we started by looking at the context of the environment in which the Family Success Alliance would operate. To do this we used a poverty index to identify those areas of Orange County where there was concentrated poverty.
Indicators utilized in the poverty index were especially important for informing the start of our work, and will continue to educate staff on any demographic shifts that may be happening in the zones over time. They included data, such as:
- % of residents who live in multi-unit or low-income housing
- % of children on Medicaid or free and reduced lunch
- % of residents who are Orange County Health Department Clinic patients
- Areas located near schools
Poverty Index Indicators
| ||Zone 4||Zone 6
|Multi-unit and/or Low-income Housing Addresses||34%||55%
|Kids on Medicaid||11%||9%
|Kids on Free or Reduced Lunch||40%||28%
|Percent of Families in Poverty (Estimate using ACS data)||25%||22%
|Number of Kids in Zone in Poverty (Estimate using ACS data)||344||893
Zone Data Reports
Zone 4 and Zone 6 were selected as pilot neighborhoods through a community application and analysis process. Once selected, both quantitative and qualitative data were used to assess the context, assets, and needs of families living in these neighborhoods.
School and demographic data provided a look into how the experiences of children and families in these Zones compare to those of all Orange County. Neighborhood survey responses and input from the community through interviews with community leaders and service providers helped FSA to determine Zone priorities for the work of Family Success Alliance. The resulting reports from this assessment included Zone Data Books and a Gap Analysis Report.
Our Two Pilot Zones are Zone 4 and Zone 6
- Located between I-40 and I-85 in central Orange County,
- Includes A.L. Stanback Middle and New Hope Elementary
- Zone 4 data shows Approximately 1 in 4 kids under 18 are living in poverty
- 55% of kids at Zone 4 schools receive free or reduced lunch
- Test scores for Zone 4 schools show that 53% of 3rd graders are
not proficient in reading and 63% of 8th graders are not proficient in math.
In their application, Zone partners described hearing concerns from parents about their children’s emotional, physical and social well-being, their safety, and their academic achievement. Parents, both Spanish-speaking and English-speaking, identified the schools as safe, nurturing and positive places for their children and a source of support and connection for the entire family. Zone 4 is fortunate to have many community partners as well as school staff and parents who are working to build and strengthen the five parts of the pipeline. Families and local organizations, many of whom have felt unheard and unimportant in the past, have expressed excitement and anticipation in the work that has already begun and in future possibilities as part of the Family Success Alliance.
- Densely populated zone that encompasses from downtown Chapel Hill southwest to Highway 54
- Strong history of the neighborhoods in this area gives the community a sense of identity
- Highest estimate of kids under 18 living in poverty – an estimated 878 kids
- Further, local data shows that approximately 30% of children at Zone 6 schools receive free or reduced lunch
The Zone 6 application highlighted early childhood development as the weakest part of their pipeline from cradle to career/college, as they feel the Zone has lost early education resources due to funding changes. Zone partners look forward to promoting the rich cultural history and diversity of their community to create a sense of unity to collaborate on projects that better the community.
Map of FSA Zone Addresses