Prince William County is looking for bilingual volunteers who will help those in the hard-to-count communities be counted in the 2020 U.S. Census. Hard-to-count areas are areas identified by the Census that are historically undercounted due to language barriers and lack of trust that the Census data is confidential.
Those interested in volunteering are encouraged to attend a training on Wednesday, Feb. 26, at the Potomac Community Library between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.
“We’re looking for bilingual volunteers, specifically to help us in upcoming events like ‘Census Saturdays!’ where census information will be distributed,” said Brian Engelmann, Prince William County Demographer and co-chair of the county’s Complete Count Committee. “That could be Korean, Tagalog, Spanish or any other language. We’re trying to get volunteers to help those who may come to the libraries that speak English as a second language.”
Registration is not required for the training and walk-ins are welcome. People who are interested can email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 703-792-7098 for more information.
Some of the volunteers who complete the training classes will staff information tables for “Census Saturdays!” at several of the county’s libraries on Saturdays from 2-4 p.m., March 14 to April 11. These dates coincide with when the Census survey will be online for people to fill out, Engelmann said. There will be additional locations and events between March through as late as June where volunteers will be needed, such as at the senior centers in Manassas and Woodbridge. Volunteers will be notified of opportunities and will be directed to sign-up through an online system.
Getting an accurate count in the U.S. Census is so important because it determines how much federal funding comes to a community. An accurate count helps communities get as much federal funding as possible to help with the costs of education, transportation, public safety, public services, housing and more. It also determines the representation the state gets in the U.S. House of Representatives.
More information about the Census and the county’s efforts is available at pwcgov.org/census.
People who wish to get even more involved may apply for a Census job at https://2020census.gov/jobs.