This was the AmeriCorps Office of Research and Evaluation's in final of four webinars in the Reigniting Civic Life Series following the release of the Current Population Survey, 2021 Civic Engagement and Volunteering Supplement.
Date and Time: Thursday, June 22, 12:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. EST.
Webinar Introduction: Andrea Robles, PhD, research and evaluation manager, AmeriCorps
- Megha Patel, PhD, research analyst, AmeriCorps
- Suzanne Pritzker, PhD, University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work
- Matthew Robbins, former graduate research assistant, University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work
- Joetta Stevenson, president, Fifth Ward Super Neighborhood #55
- Dr. Denae King, PhD, Texas Southern University
- Ms. JoAnn Burbridge, board member, Sunnyside Community Redevelopment Organization
Reflection: Katrina French, disaster services specialist, AmeriCorps
Facilitated Question and Answer Discussion: Emily McDonald, PhD, research analyst, AmeriCorps
The COVID-19 pandemic brought unprecedented challenges for both people and society, but so have the increasing number and severity of storms and disasters due to climate change. While a team of academic and community researchers in Houston, Texas were conducting a participatory action research study to explore factors shaping community members’ engagement in civic life during the COVID-19 pandemic, a record-breaking winter storm hit the area. Facing both disaster and COVID-19 at the same time, researchers learned real time what facilitates and hinders civic engagement. Although this study highlights just three communities in a single city, other localities face similar situations across the United States and globally. In this webinar, the research team discussed take-aways from their study about how communities navigate civic engagement during COVID-19, as well as in times of natural disaster.