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Getting Started

A tutorial on how to use Raising the Village

Here you will find more information on what is available on Raising the Village. Below we walk you through each section of the website, offering tips and highlighting different data tools and resources that are available.

Tip: The best way to get to know Raising the Village and all that it has to offer is to spend time exploring it. Look through the different sections of the website and play around with the various dashboards and data tools. Familiarizing yourself with the site is the fastest way to start applying child and family data in your work.

What is Raising the Village?

Raising the Village is a website that visualizes data about the health, development and wellbeing of children aged 0-14 living in Toronto and their families. It was created by the Toronto Child & Family Network, a partnership of government and non-government organizations that serve children.

The goal of Raising the Village is to mobilize data so that communities, service providers, governments and others can: make informed decisions about planning and delivering programs, take collective action to improve the lives of children and families, and better understand the needs of communities.

Raising the Village does not collect primary data itself. It draws from a variety of data sources, including public health and health services data, Statistics Canada data, the Early Development Instrument (EDI), and the Toronto District School Board, among others. Many Toronto Child & Family Network members contribute data.

Tip: While Raising the Village focuses on children and families, there is a wealth of Toronto data available about other populations on these sites: Open Data Toronto, Wellbeing Toronto, Toronto Public Health, and more.

Child & Family Indicators

Raising the Village has over 100 child and family indicators that together paint a picture of the wellbeing of Toronto’s children and families. An indicator is a measure, often expressed in the form of statistical data, which captures one or several key dimensions of an outcome.

In this section, you will find each individual indicator visualized into maps and graphs in an interactive dashboard. This section of Raising the Village does not provide analysis, but rather focuses on giving the user full control over exploring the data in different ways. There are two ways to look at the indicators:

By outcome:

An outcome is a desired change or improvement in the wellbeing of children and families. Think of each outcome as an important aspect or dimension of overall wellbeing. The Toronto Child & Family Network developed 5 child outcomes and 5 family outcomes. Each outcome is measured by a number of different child and family indicators. Tip: We recommend that you start here if you are more interested in a particular issue or area of focus, like recreation or health.

Indigenous outcomes

In addition to the child and family outcomes, there are 5 outcomes that are specific to the Indigenous community in Toronto. In this section, you will find more information about these Indigenous outcomes, as well as PDF documents that contain data from Well Living House, which conducted the Our Health Counts survey of Indigenous people living in Toronto.

How to use an Indicator Video:

Neighbourhood Dashboard

In this section, you will find an interactive dashboard that allows you to select a neighbourhood and explore all the data available about that community. This includes demographic data, such as the number of children who live in the neighbourhood, top languages spoken, the percent of refugees and visible minority groups, etc. It also includes the child and family indicators. The dashboard allows you to see how the neighbourhood compares on each indicator to other neighbourhoods in Toronto.

Raising the Village uses a level of geography called neighbourhoods. There are 140 neighbourhoods in total. Tip: Click here to find out what neighbourhood you live in, or to search a specific address, and you will also find information on how the neighbourhood boundaries were created.

How to use the Neighbourhood Dashboard video:
In-depth Reports

Raising the Village includes a number of reports, data tools and analysis of child and family wellbeing in Toronto. These reports focuses on telling stories, highlighting trends, and providing more context for the child and family indicators. There are three types of reports in this section:

Focus on Inequities

These reports disaggregate the child and family indicators by social demographic variables, such as race, gender and sexual orientation, immigration, income, etc. These reports tell a more comprehensive story about inequities, or unfair differences, between different groups of children and families.

Tip: Use the Neighbourhood Dashboard to first see who is living in your community. Then use one of the Equity Analysis Toolkit to compare how those families are doing relative to other groups. For example, if your community has a large black population, you can use the inequities report on race to see how black children are doing across the child and family indicators.

In-Depth Reports

These reports take a deeper dive into a particular data source or data tool that is useful for decision-makers. They provide background information, more detailed analysis, and may describe how a data tool or index was created, or how a data source is collected. To start, check out the Child & Family Inequities Score or the Early Development Instrument.

Maps

Raising the Village also produces a variety of different maps that are useful for a geographic analysis or for place-based planning because they show distribution patterns across the city. Check out the Services Map!

Child & Family Inequities Score

The Child & Family Inequities Score provides a summary measure of the socio-economic challenges that children and families experience to help explain the variation across Toronto’s neighbourhoods. While other composite measures of socio-economic disadvantage exist, the Child & Family Inequities Score is unique because it uses indicators that are specific to families with children under the age of 12.

Find more information about the Child & Family Inequities Score on this page, where you can see a map of the Child & Family Inequities Score, and learn more about how it was created using five different indicators.

Tip: One way to use the Child & Family Inequities Score is as a system planning tool to understand inequitable gaps in access to services. How many Very High or High Inequities neighbourhoods do not have access to your service? Are your services equitably distributed across the city?

Toronto Child & Family Network

The Toronto Child & Family Network (TC&FN) is a partnership of the many systems that affect the lives of children and families: Education, Health, Children’s Aid, Public Health, Mental Health, Special Needs, Child Care, Family Support, Library, Recreation, and major funders.

Collectively, the TC&FN works to improve the quality of and access to services, as well as coordinate and integrate our systems in order to improve shared outcomes for children and families in Toronto.

In this section, you will find more information about the TC&FN: purpose, membership, strategic goals, governance structure, meeting minutes, advisory committees and current working groups.

The challenges of growing up in Toronto

in 2017, the TC&FN worked through all of the Raising the Village data and created 5 priority issues (or challenges) on which to take action. Here you will find a PDF document of each challenge, which includes data from the child and family indicators, research, and analysis on what it means for children and families in Toronto.

From data to action

You can use data to take action to improve the outcomes of children and families. Find helpful information, tips, guiding questions and resources to make a difference with data.

Resources for families

Here you will find a link  that takes you to the City of Toronto’s website, where parents and caregivers can find services and programs, as well as parenting resources.