Community analysis: Mocksville, North Carolina
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The community of Mocksville, North Carolina comprises a vibrant neighborhood with over 5,000 residents (Town, 2015). Mocksville’s town center has a well-established organization for economic opportunities, and is enclosed by four large oak trees, which anchor the center of town, and offer a beautiful sight as their branches extend over Main Street. Mocksville also offers education opportunities with state of the art technology. The system runs from pre-school through high school and early college. Civic clubs, recreational activities, performing arts and a strong respect for values are also aspects that make Mocksville, North Carolina a great place to call home or to visit (Town, 2015). Through collecting community data about the citizens, and conducting a windshield assessment and an interview, a need was discovered within Mocksville, and a plan to address that need was formulated.
According to census data (2010), the population of Mocksville, North Carolina was 5,051. When it comes to gender, 2,770 (54.8%) people out of the total population were female, and 2,281 (45.2%) were male (Census, 2010). The primary race in Mocksville was Caucasian, with 3,734 people identifying as white. African American’s comprised 14.6 percent of the population, with 736 people identifying as such. 12 percent of the population identified as Hispanic and Latino, which is 607 people (Census, 2010).
The age ranges in Mocksville are not even. The bulk of the population, 56.8 percent, is between the ages of 18 and 64. 18.3 percent are 65 years of age or older, and 24.9 percent are under the age of 18 (Mocksville, 2015). According to economic information in the census (2010), the median household income was $40,553, and 18.7 percent of the population are below the poverty level.
When it comes to geographic parameters, Mocksville is 7.54 square miles (Mocksville, 2015). Mocksville’s history is rooted in tobacco and farming. Back in that time, Mocksville was home to a few famous residents, such as Daniel Boone, who lived near Mocksville from 1750 to 1759, Thomas Ferebee, who was a Hiroshima bombardier, J. D. Gibbs, son of Joe Gibbs, Hinton Rowan Helper, and Roy L. Williams (Mocksville, 2015).
Next, the average family size in Mocksville is 3.02. There are 884 husband-wife family households, 200 single males, and 401 single females. Education is an important part of Mocksville’s structure. In the census (2010), 78.9 percent of the population were said to be a high school graduate or higher, and 23.4 percent were said to have a Bachelor’s degree or higher. Despite the levels of education possessed by the citizens of Mocksville, the unemployment rate is 5.8 percent, and only 2,270 people above the age of 16 are employed (Mocksville, 2015).
Government data shows that the political systems in place are primarily republican, however there is also democratic, and libertarian sway in Mocksville (Census, 2010). The city has a political structure and representation. The state senate and house both have a member from Mocksville representing Davie County as a whole. They are Andrew Brock and Julia Howard (Elected, 2015). The next level on the government tier are the Davie County Commissioners, then comes the Clerk of Superior Court and the register of Deeds. The Sheriff and District Court Judges come next followed by the Mayor of Mocksville, and Mocksville Commissioners (Board, 2015). When it comes to Mocksville’s relationship to law enforcement, there are 21 full time law enforcement employees who live in the city (Mocksville, 2015). The Mocksville Police Department is located on Main Street close to the town center. Mocksville has plenty of government services that are provided. There are 42 full time government employees, who live in Mocksville (Mocksville, 2015). The city provides parks and recreation, streets and highways, police protection, firefighters, financial administration, water supply, and sewerage.
Mocksville has a lot of character when it comes to its physical features. The houses are well-kept and not dilapidated or boarded up. The streets are paved, with very few pot holes, and there are streetlights and sidewalks all the way down Main Street. The communities condition is old but well maintained. With it being a small town rooted in farming, there are a lot of old Plantation, and Victorian style homes. The community is visibly bifurcated, which means it is stratified into higher and lower income areas. The old, large, plantation homes are on one end of Main Street, and smaller dwellings, and brick homes are on the other end of Main Street.
There are many small businesses along Main Street in Mocksville, and very few big businesses. Some smaller businesses include a music instrument store, ice cream parlor, local bars, florists, a book store, and an antique store. Three of the bigger businesses on Main Street are the Davie County Enterprise, Boost Mobile, and NAPA Auto Parts.
There are three different houses of worship on Main Street. These include a Methodist, and Presbyterian Church, as well as a Life Christian Church. Along with places to worship, Mocksville has public facilities such as parks, recreation centers, schools, and human service agencies. Rich Park is located right off Main Street, and the Brock Center for the Arts is a recreation center located close to the Methodist Church near the town center. Mocksville is home to four schools, which are South Davie Middle School, Davie High School, Davie County Early College High School, and the Davie County Community College. The human service agencies in Mocksville are the Department of Social Services, Davie County Hospital, Davie County Health Department, and the Davie County Senior Center.
While driving down Main Street, doing the windshield assessment, the people in Mocksville were seen walking, and talking on cell phones, driving older vehicles, looking in store windows, going into the town hall building and the license plate building, and a few landscapers were seen mowing and trimming yards. Essentially, Mocksville is a busy town during the week.
An interview was conducted with an older member of the community of Mocksville, on March 11th, 2015, to discuss the resources in the town. Her name is Angela Cope, and she was born in 1955, making her 60 years old (personal communication, March 11, 2015). She stated that she has lived in Mocksville her whole life and has watched it grow from a rural farm town into, the city it is today. The first question asked was “what are the community’s resources within the community?” Mrs. Cope stated “well there’s a lot of things like that. The police and fire stations are nearby and the hospital is right down the road here. I have neighbors that are a big resource for me and my husband, in case of things like emergencies” (personal communication, March 11, 2015). The next question asked was “what resources are used by the community outside the community, and how are they accessed?” Mrs. Cope stated “The only thing I can think of are the hospitals in Winston. My husband had a stroke a few years ago and had to be taken there by ambulance. My doctors are over in Winston to, and i drive myself to my appointments” (personal communication, March 11, 2015). The next question was “are there any informal human services available in Mocksville?” Mrs. Cope asked for that to be clarified, so a few examples were given such as neighbors, and charities. Mrs. Cope stated that “oh yes, my neighbors have been a big help to me and my husband. The people around here are really nice.” When asked who the leaders were in Mocksville, Mrs. Cope stated “You know, I’m not sure. I know Andy Stokes is the Sherriff, but I don’t know anyone on the town board. We have a mayor though” (personal communication, March 11, 2015).
The next question asked was “do you know about Mocksville’s communication patterns?” She stated, “The only thing like that I know about is 911. I think the building is over by the hospital. I hear the fire stations sirens going off sometimes, and we have a weather scanner in the kitchen. I hear about Davie County being under weather alerts sometimes like during thunderstorms” (personal communication, March 11, 2015). When asked what the general feel is of Mocksville to its residents, Mrs. Cope stated that “Oh, Mocksville is a great place to live. Everything I need is close by and the people are nice.” Next asked was “how do you think Mocksville is perceived by outsiders?” She stated, “Well I hope they think it’s nice. It’s got this historic look to it that people like” (personal communication, March 11, 2015). The next question was, “Does Mocksville have any traditions?” Mrs. Cope said, “Yeah, we have a Christmas parade every year. There’s the bed races, and the lights they put on the big oak trees at Christmas time. It’s really pretty.” The next question asked was, “What are the strengths of the community?” She stated, “I think the people are a strength, and the resources we have” (personal communication, March 11, 2015). The last questions asked was, “what are the human service needs of the community?” In response, Mrs. Cope stated that “The only need I can think about are things for seniors. We have the senior resource center, but when I was taking care of my mom before she passed, I would have liked some more help. It was hard on me and my husband” (personal communication, March 11, 2015).
After the interview, the next step for this community assessment is planning an intervention that a social worker could do with the community, which meets a need identified by the community. Based upon this assessment, a need discovered was more senior services, particularly helping caregivers who are caring for their parent or loved one. To form an intervention based on this need, Asset Based Community Development, or ABCD, was used. It is a strategy for sustainable community driven development. ABCD builds on the assets that are already found in the community and mobilizes individuals, associations, and institutions to come together to build on their assets-- not concentrate on their needs.
An asset Mocksville already has, when it comes to the older adult population, is the Davie County Senior Resource Center. The center already has many activities and programs for seniors; however, the center could house and do more for this population. An intervention to propose is an elder daycare center. The senior center is located in the heart of Davie County and could offer a great location for such a program. An elder daycare center would simply be adding on to the services already offered at the senior center, and would help give caregivers a reprieve for a few hours during the day to relax or run errands. Simply, the elderly population is growing not only in small towns like Mocksville, but all over the United States. As these numbers increase, the resources for this population will need to increase as well.
In conclusion, through collecting community data about the citizens, and conducting a windshield assessment and an interview, a need was discovered within Mocksville, North Carolina, and a plan to address that need was formulated. With a population of over 5,000 and almost 20% being older adults, the need of a resource for caregivers in Mocksville became apparent, and even more so after an interview with a citizen of the town. By using an ABCD approach, the strengths of the community were assessed, and the possible intervention of an elder daycare center was formed. To end, community resources are vital for all populations to thrive. Mocksville has met that need, but will need to continue to grow its assets to meet the needs of a growing elderly population.
Davie County, NC Appointed Board Members. (2015). Retrieved from http://www.daviecountync.gov/index.aspx?NID=483
Davie County, NC Elected Officials. (2015). Retrieved from http://www.daviecountync.gov/DocumentCenter/Home/View/25
Mocksville Town, North Carolina QuickLinks. (2010). US Census Bureau. Retrieved from http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/37/3743720lk.html
Mocksville, North Carolina Profile. (2015). Retrieved from http://www.city-data.com/city/Mocksville-North-Carolina.htm
Town of Mocksville, NC. (2015). Retrieved March 31, 2015, from http://mocksvillenc.org/
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