Vital Signs

Edmonton Vital Signs® helps identify the greatest needs for funding from Edmonton Community Foundation (ECF).

Vital Signs® is a national initiative conducted by participating community foundations across Canada. The Edmonton Vital Signs® Report identifies community needs, which helps us focus our resources on those needs. Vital Signs® is also a valuable teaching tool and resource for policy makers and organizations working on the front-lines. These groups use Vital Signs® to help inform their decision making processes.

We partner with the Edmonton Social Planning Council (ESPC) to ensure the information provided by Vital Signs® is accurate. ESPC is an independent social research and analysis organization. They have been operating in Edmonton for more than 75 years. You can learn more about the ESPC by clicking here. We also work with a committee of community experts to ensure the report is examining the right issues.

The 2016 Vital Signs Report focuses on social inclusion with a look toward newcomers in Edmonton. Unless you are Aboriginal, your ancestors came from somewhere else, which means most Canadians are immigrants.

Let’s look a some of the data you will find in the report:

  • In 2026, the first of the baby boomers will reach the age of 80 and the number of deaths will increase significantly. Using a medium immigration rate of 7.5 immigrants per 1,000 population and a typical fertility rate of 1.7 children per woman, the migratory increase would account for 80% of Canada’s population growth. Without a level of immigration sustained at current levels, or a substantial increase in fertility, Canada’s population growth could, within 20 years, be close to zero.
  • In short, Canadians are aging faster than we are giving birth. Without immigrants, we won’t have a workforce to sustain the growing number of seniors.
  • 7.6% of immigrants are self-employed compared to 5.6% of the non-immigrant population.
  • 51.9% of incorporated immigrant businesses have one or more employees.
  • Edmonton immigrants are also highly educated. On average, immigrants arriving in Edmonton are more highly educated than non-immigrants. In 2011, 60.9% of all immigrants had a post-secondary certificate or higher compared to 53.8% of adult, Canadian-born citizens.

These are only a few findings you will discover in the 2016 Vital Signs Report. If you would like to read the reports, follow the links below:

We take action through the Vital Signs® Grants program to ensure we go beyond simply identifying issues. In November, we identify an area of focus based on the 2016 report’s findings. We then launch a call for charities working in the Edmonton area to apply for grants to fund projects or programs related to the area of focus. These grants are for amounts up to $40,000 per year for three years. You can learn more about Vital Signs® Grants by clicking here.

If you would like to read past reports, follow the links below:

  • 2015 Vital Signs Report on Edmonton’s Aboriginal communities here
  • 2014 Vital Signs Report on Edmonton Youth here
  • 2013 Vital Signs Report on Edmonton Food Security here