Tri-County Poverty Summit session. Photo Credit: Valerie Rangel, NMCF Community Program Manager

NMCF (along with organizers from government agencies, nonprofits, and community members and leaders) attended a Tri-County Poverty Summit on March 29th. Speakers included New Mexico Voices for Children, SouthWest Organizing Project (SWOP), Prosperity Works, officials from San Miguel and Mora counties, and officials from the municipalities of Santa Rosa, Pecos and Las Vegas.

Poverty, economic sustainability, substance abuse, and lack of access to health care within San Miguel, Mora, and Guadalupe counties were among the topics discussed. Solutions brought forward by the group included improvement of health through community gardens and promotion of nutrition, affordable housing, investment in early childhood education, better coordination with community-based partnerships, and avocation for financial stability for the state.

Rock Ulibarri, the San Miguel County Commissioner who spearheaded the Tri-County Poverty Summit, remarked, “Poverty won’t be solved in a short time. It’s time, though, to consider what to value, what we are blessed with, and how to bless others.”

Another meeting will be scheduled so more community members and youth will be able to participate.