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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Issue 2: Southern Californians Vested in Community


The information from this Fact Sheet can help better inform elected officials about the public’s concerns and priorities, and can also help the residents of this region gain insight into who they are as a community. In particular, the information can tell us the degree that we interact with others – with elected officials, neighbors, those we meet through volunteer work. These are all aspects of what can be considered community engagement. One key result from the survey is that a majority of Southern California residents are engaged in their community. While only one quarter of residents are highly engaged, most residents have been involved in at least one of the three activities examined here over the course of the past twelve months. It is important to note that there are constraints on certain populations that limit their level of engagement. Lower levels of education and income greatly decrease the likelihood of community engagement. Finally, while church attendance has little correlation with community engagement, the more money one has donated to non-religious organizations, the more likely he or she is to be highly engaged.

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