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Taking the pulse of our community

Vital Signs is a global research methodology that explores the key themes of health, education, employment, housing and belonging to provide a community snapshot to better target funding and support.

The report findings, published in March 2023 is drawn from several sources including the 2021 Census, over 30 government and private databases and a 2022 community survey across the Wingecarribee LGA.

A detailed snapshot

The SHCF funded the inaugural Vital Signs Research report to provide a detailed snapshot of the growing needs of our community in order to ensure help and support is directed where it is needed.

According to Nicole Smith, Chair of the Southern Highlands Community Foundation.

“There is much to celebrate, however there is also considerable hidden need within our community. Our hope is that this report will help to spark debate and shine a light on the areas of need and assist community organisations in creating funding initiatives that can have real, long-lasting impact.”


A word from our Patron, Hugh Mackay AO

Hugh Mackay AO, iconic Australian psychologist, social researcher and writer, and Patron of the Foundation, said:

“I have not previously seen such a comprehensive analysis of the characteristics of a region.”

“This remarkable snapshot of the community reveals some very bright spots (life satisfaction, material comfort, enjoyment of the natural environment) and some very dark shadows (increasing domestic violence and sexual assault and a disturbing number of residents who don’t feel connected to the community). The community and the Foundation must now address the questions raised by these findings”.