Case Study

United Way of Licking County, Community Blueprint Research

The Context

In a time of increasing demand for social, health, and economic services, community leaders in Licking County, Ohio wanted to identify and assess the priority issues facing residents in the county and to begin developing a coordinated plan to address these needs. In short, Licking County’s Community Blueprint Steering Committee needed data and insights that would help them ensure precious resources (of both time and treasure) are aligned with critical community needs.

The Community Blueprint Steering Committee is comprised of leaders and representatives from United Way of Licking County, the Licking County Foundation, Licking Memorial Hospital, Licking County Health Department, Licking County Board of Development Disabilities, local government and courts, behavioral health providers, the faith based community, community residents, and many other organizations.

The Critical Question

What are the three to five priority issues that must be addressed if Licking County is to be a well functioning, safe and healthy community? And what strengths or assets are already available that can help with these efforts?

Our Solution

Our research team planned and administered a comprehensive needs assessment process that included both primary and secondary data: a survey of a random sample of residents; multiple focus groups held throughout the county with residents; a survey of community stakeholders; and information from county, state, and federal sources. All of this information was succinctly summarized and used during a collaborative prioritization session led by Illuminology.


The combination of high-quality data collection and effective group facilitation led to the Community Blueprint Steering Committee agreeing to work together on three priority issues. When the report is released publicly, you can read more all about it here.


The Community Blueprint Steering Committee is now beginning to plan out specific steps it will take to address these issues, and together make a greater community impact.