Allentown, Pa., June 11, 2020—Lehigh Community Foundation recently received a Pennsylvania Census 2020 Outreach Grant for $25,000 in partnership with Lehigh and Northampton counties to increase the census count in the region. The results of Census 2020 will determine the level of federal funding the Lehigh Valley receives over the next ten years.
The grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) is supporting a variety of promotional activities in Lehigh and Northampton counties including Spanish language radio advertising, public service announcements on Lehigh and Northampton Transportation Authority (LANta) buses, television and online advertising, and social media outreach.
“The people of Northampton County are responding to Census 2020 at a high rate so far. The stakes are very high and our folks know that an accurate count is the difference between a bright future and a much brighter future for us all,” said Northampton County Executive Lamont McClure, Jr. “We’ve been pleased to collaborate with the Lehigh Valley Community Foundation and Lehigh County in an effort to highlight just how important responding to Census 2020 is to the Lehigh Valley.”
Data from the Census 2020 will affect the annual allocation of over $800 billion in federal funds for 300 federal programs which include infrastructure, education, healthcare, and emergency services. Programs in the Lehigh Valley that rely on census data for the allocation include $10 million for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and $6.7 million in Community Development Block Grants each year. An undercount in the Lehigh Valley puts these and numerous other federal programs at risk for underfunding.
“As Lehigh County Executive, I am pleased to be in partnership with Northampton County and the Lehigh Valley Community Foundation as we continue our efforts to promote the 2020 Census,” said Phil Armstrong. “Together, the grant funding received from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development will allow us to broaden our voices and raise awareness for the Census. The efforts we put in today will impact our communities for the next ten years, and I am grateful for this collaboration and opportunity to further promote the Census in Lehigh County and its surrounding neighborhoods.“
One project funded by the grant will include a marketing campaign through Viamedia. A 30-second television spot will run over 900 times for the next two months on major cable networks on Service Electric Cable TV. In addition, an OTT or (Over-The-Top) campaign will generate over 150,000 impressions in the Lehigh Valley on streaming services such as Roku, Amazon Fire, AppleTV, etc. Utilizing a premium pre-roll campaign, the ad will populate over 120,000 times when internet users in the Lehigh Valley access video content from a variety of news and sports networks.
“When the COVID-19 hit we had to pivot from face-to-face community outreach and census awareness raising events to a digital approach,” said Michael Wilson, director of communications at LVCF. “The focus of the grant is to encourage people to complete the census by reaching them primarily in their homes when listening to the radio, watching television, surfing the web, or viewing social media. Our message is clear. Completing the census is easy, safe, confidential, and important.””
Census 2020 can be completed online at: https://my2020census.gov/. The 2020 Census asks a few simple questions about households and everyone living there on April 1, 2020. To see an image of the questionnaire, and for more information on answering each question, please visit Questions Asked.