Neighbourhoods Can Help Kids Thrive!

Our Kids Network Neighbourhood Profiles and Municipal Data Available Now!

By Rebecca Abavi, Our Kids Network Research & Knowledge Broker Intern

Good neighbourhoods can help children thrive. Research tells us that in neighbourhoods where people get along, share values, and trust each other, youth have better mental health. And we know that neighbourhoods with lower social support and higher levels of poverty can negatively impact children’s development.

OKN Neighbourhood Map

 

 

It is because neighbourhoods can play such a key role in supporting positive development of children, that Our Kids Network (OKN) collects and shares data on child and youth outcomes at the neighbourhood level.

 

 

Our brand new Neighbourhood Profiles showcase data from six different sources: the Early Development Instrument, Education Quality and Accountability Office, IntelliHealth Ontario, Kindergarten Parent Survey, Statistics Canada Census, and Tell Them From Me Elementary School Survey. Together, this data provides a snapshot of how Halton children 0 to 12 years-old are doing at the neighbourhood level.

 

Image: families in neighbourhoods

The Profiles provide Halton-specific information, enabling professionals and agencies to identify areas of vulnerability and strength in this population of children. The neighbourhood data can reveal gaps in services, help to identify changes needed, and support the implementation of those changes, all at the local level.

The OKN Neighbourhood Profiles are complemented by municipal-level data from the Tell Them From Me Secondary School Survey, which provides information on the wellbeing of secondary school students in grades 9 to 12 in Burlington, Halton Hills, Milton and Oakville.

Data becomes more meaningful when it is shared, debated and discussed. Use the OKN Neighbourhood Profiles and municipal data to create opportunities for discussion and collaboration with your colleagues and the community, and to better understand and respond to the needs of children and youth in Halton.

What is an Our Kids Network Neighbourhood?

Our Kids Network partners, researchers, and community professionals identified 27 different neighbourhoods for the purpose of collecting, analyzing and sharing important local research. The neighbourhoods’ borders reflect Statistics Canada census boundaries, and natural, transportation, municipal, regional boundaries.

 

References

Donnelly, L., McLanahan, S., Brooks-Gun, J., Garfinkel, I., Wagner, B.G., Jacobsen, W.C., Gold, S., & Gaydosh, L. (2016). Cohesive neighbourhoods where social expectations are shared may have positive impact on adolescent mental health. Health Affairs, 35(11).

Morrissey, T.W., & Vinopal, K.M. (2017). Neighbourhood poverty and children’s academic skills and behaviour in early elementary school. Journal of Marriage and Family, 80(1).