PEPartnership, Inc. 
We have been blessed by God with an abundance of gifts.
In response, we share God's love and God's kingdom.

The Importance of "Beancounting"

Keeping track of statistics -- about monies spent, about guest demographics, about products or services provided -- often gets overlooked in the busy-ness of things, or downplayed because it's not really "spiritual," or it's considered too cold, too business-like for social ministry. We think that the more we know about what we're doing, who we're serving, and how well what we do matches the needs of those we serve is important. To that end, we keep track of a lot of numbers, and we run a lot of analyses on a pretty routine basis. We're also starting to build longitudinal data of how guest demographics and serve efficacy may change over time.

When we originally built this site, this page had three columns -- one column citing reports from some of the studies we've run over the past few years, one column on normative demographics and statistics, and a third column with reports from the PEPbase software. Since those PEPbase reports essentially provide you with the opportunity to get live data on the exact studies we were citing, we've removed that first column, and replaced it with the PEPbase reports themselves.  As we build more longitudinal data and reports, we may include some of those -- comparing changes in age/gender distribution over time, for instance, or changes in language distribution by ZIP code -- we may look to include some of those reports here. For at least the remainder of 2011, however, we think the PEPbase Report Menu functionality will provide you with better information. 

PEPbase Report Menu

These reports are similar to those built in to the PEPbase software, and pull data from the actual databases used by the PEPartnership agencies. However, the versions available here have been modified to remove any possibility of accessing personally identifiable data on Pantry guests; further, only summative PEPartnership data, not agency-specific data, is available.

We use the information gathered from these reports from our own use of PEPbase in many of our presentations and papers. We have provided access to these adapted report formats here to allow visitors to and users of this site to generate their own summaries for use in research or presentations that they may be undertaking. If you do include results from this site in a presentation or paper, we would, of course, appreciate being credit as the source of the information; we would also greatly appreciate receiving a copy of the presentation/paper.

The default definition for the data to include in these reports is data from households who were active within the last 18 months, with a 2 week offset from the date that the report is generated. For example, a report generated on March 14, 2011, would include data from September 1, 2009 through February 28, 2011. These dates can, however, be manually redefined as the user's request. The "frame" for the data will be reflected in the report header. 

  • Household Consumption by Number of Visits (PEP001)
    This report lists every household within the PEPartnership data that made a user-definable number of visits, and lists the products received at each visit, from the most recent visit to the earliest visit. It also provides a summary table at the top of the report showing the minimum number of products received on any visit, the maximum number of products on any visit, the mean number of products per visit,  and the average fulfillment rate (the number of products were provided compared to the number of products requested).

  • Household Members by Age and Gender (PEP002)
    Analyzes the distribution of individuals (in contrast to households) in the Partnership database by gender and age category (Adults 65+, Adults 18-64, Teens 12-17, Youth 4-11, and infants 0-3). 

  • Product Consumption for Household X (PEP004)
    This report produces a list of the products received by a randomly chosen household at each visit made by that household, in order from most recent visit to earliest visit. Because this report could potentially lead to identifiable data, the household presented will be randomly chosen each time that the report is generated. 

  • Household Number of Visits by Month (PEP006) 
    This report provides a table by month for the time period specified, showing the total number of visits for each month, the number of unique households visiting each month, the minimum visits (which is automatically 1, since that's the smallest number of visits that can be made by any household), the maximum number of visits made by any household, and the mean number of visits by each household. NOTE: This report may take a long time to generate. 

  • Households by Language and ZIP Code (PEP013)
    Since the PEPbase software currently provides support for households is Spanish, Hmong, or French (it is capable of supporting many more languages; these three are the only languages included as of February 2011), it is possible to examine the distribution of households by primary language across ZIP codes, to get a better understanding of "clustering" effects  of these households across the region. This information may be particularly useful for agencies looking to establish services in a given neighborhood, as they will have some idea of the magnitude of the need to provide staff support for non-English speakers. 

  • Product Consumption by Time Period (PEP014)
    This report provides a report on products -- how many of each product were in stock, how many of each product were authorized, how many of each product were requested, how many of each product were provided -- and evaluative information as to what percentage of product requests were fulfilled and what percentage of authorized products were in stock.
       Please note, however, that in-stock status was only being recorded and used in these tabulations beginning March 24, 2011; any data before that date will yield erroneously high fulfillment numbers. Also, the report includes all products that have been defined as PEP products, including products that have been de-listed from active status at the PEPartnership level. The fact that these products were provided at any point in time means that they are included in the consumption tables, and therefore show up in this report as apparently active products.

  • Products Distributed for Households with at least 1 Child 3 or Younger (PEP015)
    This report was originally developed to allow us to assess the need for diapers and other baby products. It is currently being modified to allow you to look at product demand for user-definable household characteristics across age ranges and genders, but is now set to examine only consumption by households with children 3 years or younger. 

  • New Households Registered by Month (PEP016)
    One of the factors we watch is how many new households we register each month. This report gives that data, summarized across all agencies in the PEPartnership.  This growth is usually offset by families that no longer need us, but as of late fall 2012 we're still gaining more families than we're losing by attrition.    

  • Household Average Number of Visits by ZIP Code (PEP018)
    In addition to looking at where our guest families live, we thought it might be interesting to see whether there is a difference in how often families in different areas of the city/county use PEPartnership services. This can help us inform legislators and policy makers of areas that appear to have higher poverty/need rates, and may warrant special attention. (This report also gives us a chance to clean up some of our data, as it lets us see erroneously entered ZIP codes.)

Normative Demographic Information

It's also important to be able to compare our data to the normative data, or the data for the general population. Is there a difference between family size for our guests and the general population? do we have a disproportional share of children or elderly? of single parents? of women? of particular ethnic groups?

When we have found such differences, you'll find that reflected in the reports and studies under PEPartnership Demographics. The links here are provided so that you can easily locate the same data that we were using for our comparisons. 

  • Dane County Census Data
    The State & Cty QuickFacts page for Dane County from the U.S. Census Bureau. 

  • Consumer Expenditure Survey
    2009 data showing quintiles of income before taxes, with average annual expenditures and characteristics.  

  • American Factfinder
    A central point to start exploring population, housing, economic, and geographic data. 

  • Huggies® Every Little Bottom Study
    In 2008, Huggies | Kimberly-Kimberly Clark commissioned a study on the needs and costs of diapers in the U.S. and Canada. The resulting study highlights the impact not only in terms of costs but in terms of emotional stress, maternal well-being, and employment limitations. 

  • Cost of Cloth Diapers
    While this site is more focused on promoting cloth diapers over disposable diapers, it's one of the few sites that we've found that gives actual numbers for how many diapers a child is apt to need. Where the Every Little Bottom study provides important information about the impact of not having enough diapers, this site gives information about how many diapers may be enough diapers. 

If you're a guest who uses any of the PEPartnership Alliance pantries, and you want or need to give us feedback, please send an email to
If you have comments or corrections about this site generally, please email