Appendix A: Building the Community Profile

Category Description Questions to Answer
Demographical (people-related information) Population, distribution, age, ethnicity & cultures
  • Total community population?
  • Population of each census tract?
  • Which census tracts have the greatest concentration of high-risk populations:
    • Children under 5 years?
    • Older adults?
    • People in poverty?
    • People with disabilities?
    • People who speak little or no English?
Social Characteristics Education levels & family profiles
  • What are the demographics of education levels throughout your community?
  • What census tracts include the greatest populations of the following:
    • Single-parent homes?
    • Two-parent homes?
    • People living alone?
    • Older adults living alone?
Economic Characteristics Employment profile & rates; income levels
  • What is the employment profile?
    • Types of jobs?
    • Work in community or commute?
    • Major local employers?
    • Unemployment rate?
    • Income-level ranges?
Housing Profile Age of homes & occupants; types of residential occupancies; home ownership vs. rental properties; transience among residents
  • What is the overall housing profile of your community?
    • Average age of homes?
    • New (or recent) construction?
    • Homes with automatic detection and suppression equipment?
    • Types of residential construction?
    • Types of residential properties (single, family, duplex, multi-unit)?
    • Renter vs. owner occupied?
    • Transience (how often do people re-locate)?
Growth Trends Past & future population growth trends (consider using the U.S. Census Bureau website to obtain this information)
  • How has the population changed in the previous 20 years?
  • What will the profile look like in 10 years?

Source: Leadership Strategies for Community Risk Reduction–VIP Pre-Course Materials; FEMA, National Fire Academy