Girls and Young Women Adult Women Elder Women

Methodology & Data Sources

This 2011 Lives of Women & Girls Status Report uses as its foundation the earlier quality of life indicator reports published by the Women's Fund of Monterey County – First Glance in 2004, and a data update prepared in 2008. As such, this report relies substantially on data elements pulled from an array of existing secondary data sources. This includes data from sources such as the US Census, the California Health Interview Survey (CHIS), the California Departments of Education and Public Health, and local agencies including the Monterey County Departments of Health and Social & Employment Services, among others.

These sources and data elements were selected for use based upon the validity and reliability of the data, and the consistency with which the data is collected and reported. When compiling a report based upon secondary data, it is common to find that similar data is not always reported the same way. For example, different sources report geographic units (regions, census divisions, zip codes) differently for subsets of the County. Race/ethnicity may also be defined differently by various data sources. In addition, data does not always cover the entire population for every indicator. For example, data may only be collected on low-income populations. In this report, we make no attempt to modify the definitions or language used by the original source.

In addition, for this study, a number of focus groups and interviews were conducted with local women and girls in order to validate the data, and to gain a perspective on issues and conditions in the community – through the words and voices of the women and girls themselves. A total of four focus groups and five interviews were conducted, and collectively, they included a diverse group of women and girls of all ages (teen to seniors) and socio-economic backgrounds, and spanned the issue areas covered in this report.

Data Sources

California Cancer Registry
Cancer Inquiry System /

California Department of Education
Data Quest /

California Department of Education & WestED
California Healthy Kids Survey /

California Postsecondary Education Commission /

California Public Health Department
Breastfeeding Statistics /

Center for Health Policy Research, UCLA
California Health Interview Survey, 2003-2009 /

Community Foundation for Monterey County
Girls' Health in Girls' Hands Report /

First 5 Monterey County

Monterey County Department of Health

Monterey County Vital Statistics System, 2009 /

Monterey County Department of Social and Employment Services

Monterey County Elections

Monterey County Rape Crisis Center

United States Census Bureau
American Community Survey, 2004-2009 /