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Reviewing our Call to Action

by Ashley Wilson; Brianna Stack; Jason Duffield; Jillian Olinger; Joshua Bates; Kelly Capatosto; Kyle Strickland; Mary McKay; Matt Martin; Mikyung Baek; Zachary E. Kenitzer

Dec 21, 2017

Renewing Our Call to Action responds to the October 2015 Youth Perspective Report completed by the City of Columbus to support their expanding work in the My Brother's Keeper Initiative. As a part of that report's recommendations, the City of Columbus seeks to work with the community to collaboratively set short and long-term goals with measurable targets, or common benchmarks of success.


In an effort to bring the community together around youth initiatives, the City of Columbus commissioned the Kirwan Institute to develop a report to learn more about the local landscape of youth vulnerability, and to get a better understanding of existing assets at the neighborhood level. This report provides a portrait of youth vulnerability and resources across Columbus, and outlines how we can work together to raise the bar and close achievement gaps in order to ensure that all youth in Columbus have the opportunity to succeed. Renewing Our Call to Action is the first step of a recommitment to building a community that provides opportunity for all.

  • Vulnerability is highest in the Linden, Hilltop, East Side, and South Side neighborhoods, but different types of vulnerability drive overall vulnerability.
  • Concentrations of high and low vulnerability illustrate a contrast between centrally located neighborhoods and outlying suburbs.
  • Youth of Color are 18% more likely to live in a neighborhood experiencing high or very high vulnerability.
  • White youth are 62% more likely to live in an area of low or very low vulnerability.
  • 1 in 10 White Early Childhood and K–12 Youth live in neighborhoods with very high vulnerability.
  • 1 in 5 Early Childhood and K–12 Youth of Color live in neighborhoods with very high vulnerability.
  • There is a 47% difference in the third grade reading proficiency rates of very low and very high vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • There is a 21% difference in the high school graduation rates of very low and very high vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • There is a 26% difference in the young adult educational attainment rate of very low and very high vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • There is a 52% difference in the youth poverty rates of very low and very high vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • There is a more than $57,000 difference in the median household income of very low and very high vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • There is a 15% difference in the unemployment rate of very low and very high vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • There is a 21% difference in the Modified Retail Food Environment Index rates of very low and very high vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • There is an 8 year difference in the life expectancy rate of very low and very high vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • There is nearly a 15 point difference in the violent crime rates in very low and very high vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • There is more than 15 times the number of gun crimes in very high vulnerability neighborhoods when compared with very low vulnerability neighborhoods.
  • Despite the highest concentration in Downtown Columbus and Near East neighborhoods, youth service providers concentrate in different neighborhoods.
  • Gaps in youth service providers exist, particularly in the Greater Linden, Northland, Hilltop, and South Side neighborhoods