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Drivers for Change – Identify Needs

Equity Framework > Drivers for Change > Identify Needs

When beginning to understand community needs, it’s important to step back and question who is identifying the need and how the need is being identified. The perspective from which a needs assessment is done has deep implications for the work.

Community-based needs assessments should consider assets and accurately reflect multiple perspectives from that community and what they see as most important. A thorough needs assessment also considers the history of change in a community, including who was engaged in the past, and an understanding of the impact of previous work to identify needs.

Adapted from:

  1. Racial Equity Tools – Tip sheets: How can we Assess Our Community, and What are the Initial Steps and Considerations for Doing Racial Equity Work? Retrieved from
    http://www.racialequitytools.org/resourcefiles/How_Can_We_Assess_Our_Community__And_What_Are_The_Initial_Steps_And_Considerations_For_Doing_Racial_Equity_Work.pdf

Further Reading/ Additional Resources

The Community Tool Box is a free, online resource for those working to build healthier communities and bring about social change. It offers thousands of pages of tips and tools for taking action in communities. It is developed and managed by the KU (University of Kansas) Center for Community Health and Development
https://ctb.ku.edu/en/table-of-contents/assessment/assessing-community-needs-and-resources

Sample Tools

The Needs Assessment Resource Guide is a product of the Quality Improvement and Innovation Partnership and its Working Group on Evaluation, Measurement and Needs Assessment –
http://www.hqontario.ca/portals/0/documents/qi/qi-rg-needs-assessment-0901-en.pdf

Comprehensive Needs Assessment: Materials adapted from “Planning and Conducting Needs Assessments: A Practical Guide” (1995) –
https://www2.ed.gov/admins/lead/account/compneedsassessment.pdf

A Community Needs Assessment Guide A Brief Guide on How to Conduct a Needs Assessment –
https://cyfar.org/sites/default/files/Sharma%202000.pdf

Racial Equity Tools – Tip sheets: How can we Assess Our Community, and What are the Initial Steps and Considerations for Doing Racial Equity Work? Retrieved from
http://www.racialequitytools.org/resourcefiles/How_Can_We_Assess_Our_Community__And_What_Are_The_Initial_Steps_And_Considerations_For_Doing_Racial_Equity_Work.pdf