The Victoria Foundation’s Vital Signs is an annual community check-up, measuring the well-being and vitality of the residents of Greater Victoria.

The report looks at survey results of 12 key issues such as housing, transportation, arts and culture and health.

This is the 13th year the Victoria Foundation has offered the online survey, and close to 1,800 residents from Sooke to Sidney responded.

Sandra Richardson, CEO of the Victoria Foundation is grateful for those who take the time to fill in the in-depth survey.

“It gives us a good idea of what people in our community feel are the things we’re doing well, but also, the opportunity to do better.”

The Victoria Foundation hosted a breakfast to launch the 2018 Vital Signs report.

Close to 200 people from various community groups, business, government, education, and non-profit organizations attended the launch on Oct. 2 in downtown Victoria.

Catherine Holt, CEO of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce says that the survey offers valuable insights.

“A lot of us look to it every year to get a good overview of attitudes and opinions and concerns of a wide array of people who live here,” says Holt.

Dr. Richard Stanwick, Chief Medical Health Officer for Island Health agrees.

“This actually does a really brilliant job of framing the social determinants of health, which is probably the most important thing in keeping people healthy.”

And while 85 per cent of respondents described themselves as happy, nearly one quarter feel high or overwhelming stress about their finances.   Not surprisingly, the cost of housing and the standard of living are top concerns.

“That absolutely reflects what we’re hearing from our members,” says Holt.  “The number one thing we hear from employers is the difficulty they have getting workers to move to the city because of the cost of housing.”

Click here to read the Vital Signs 2018 Report.

Veronica Cooper