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McALLEN - The City of McAllen recently received only one of four grants awarded by the foundation, Texans Care for Children, in the amount of $5,000 to assist the municipality with its efforts for Census 2020 outreach efforts. The City of McAllen will use the grant to print coloring books, purchase supplies, and distribute art kits and Census curriculum to engage and inform youth and their caretakers in the community about the importance and significance of the 2020 Census. “We seek to enhance the knowledge, understanding and impact that the Census exercise has on our community. This is a decennial event and we get one chance every 10 years to get it right,” said McAllen Police Chief Victor Rodriguez, chairman of the City of McAllen Complete Census Count Committee. “The City of McAllen is a Hardto-Count (HTC) Community, identified as such by the Department of Commerce, the federal agency that is responsible for conducting the Census. In fact, using the Census Response Outreach Area Mapper, 21 of the 31 Census tracts in McAllen have a predicted 25% and higher low response score. Therefore, it is imperative that we find new, interesting and effective ways to get out the message of the importance of participating in the 2020 Census.” With this grant, the coloring books, curriculum, story time books and art kits will be distributed to daycare centers and Headstart programs in those hardto-count areas throughout McAllen. Additionally, beginning this month, the City of McAllen will hold Census Awareness events targeting youth and their caretakers monthly at the McAllen Main Library and two City of McAllen community centers. Children will go home with Census certificates and toolkits to share with family members. All materials and curriculum printed will be in both Spanish and English. The goal of the project is to provide awareness and inform specifically young children and their caretakers about the importance of responding to the Census. “McAllen Public Library staff, who already work with caregivers, youth and Spanish-speaking residents are well-prepared to help break the many barriers to participation,” said Kate Horan, Head Librarian, McAllen Public Library. “The City of McAllen’s Complete Census Count Committee understands that there is a population in our community that has a fear or distrust of government or may not understand the importance of participating in the Census. With this new outreach tool, we will target those low-response areas in McAllen and hopefully, will help to make ...

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