$40,000 Grant Support Economic Relief Working Group

In honor of our 40th anniversary, Albuquerque Community Foundation has partnered with the Santa Fe Community Foundation (“SFCF”) on a joint grant of $40,000 to the New Mexico  Economic Relief Working Group, a cohort of community immigrant organizations. The unrestricted grant represents a collaborative effort between the two foundations, which were both founded in 1981, to  support inclusive COVID-19 recovery across the state.

“This joint gift reflects our continued commitment to collaboration in philanthropy,” said Christopher Goett, President & CEO of the Santa Fe Community Foundation. “As our two organizations celebrate their first 40 years serving New Mexico, we recognize the importance of working together to invest in a more just, equitable, and resilient future.”

“We are so proud and grateful for this opportunity to partner with the amazing team at the Santa Fe Community Foundation,” said Randy Royster, President & CEO, Albuquerque Community Foundation. “It was important to each of us this collaborative grant would support organically developed collaborations between nonprofits and reinforce the importance of philanthropy supporting policy and advocacy in economic relief for working people and families in New Mexico.”

The New Mexico Economic Relief Working Group is made up of five community-based and advocacy organizations: New Mexico Voices for Children, El CENTRO de Igualdad y Derecho, Partnership for Community Action, Comunidades en Acción y de Fe (NM CAFé), and Somos Un Pueblo Unido. Together, these organizations research, design, and implement government-sponsored emergency assistance programs for New Mexicans who were excluded from federal COVID-19 relief efforts, including undocumented residents and those from mixed immigration status families. During the pandemic, the group successfully advocated for $25 million that was distributed through local and state cash assistance programs.

A workgroup of Albuquerque and Santa Fe Community Foundation staff discussed potential collaboratives to support through this joint grant opportunity, agreeing on the importance of eliminating barriers to all immigrants and refugees receiving assistance via the safety net. Also, it was crucial for the grant to make an impact on youth as a signal of each Foundation’s commitment and investment in future generations.

“In providing this award to our coalition, SFCF and ACF are recognizing the contributions of essential immigrant workers to our state and the unfair exclusions embedded in our safety net systems,” said Marcela Díaz, Executive Director of Somos Un Pueblo Unido. “It is also a recognition of the power of grassroots groups to advance solutions grounded in the everyday experiences of our communities. Our work to ensure equity in the state’s recovery plans is far from done. We are deeply honored by the foundations’ show of support.”

Marian Méndez-Cera, Policy Coordinator from EL CENTRO de Igualdad y Derechos, said, “Essential but excluded can no longer remain the status quo. We are proud that in New Mexico we have succeeded at getting millions of dollars into the pockets of immigrant workers and mixed status families who were excluded from federal relief. We will continue to organize for a more just and inclusive economy in our state which recognizes our communities’ vast contributions in which all our families can thrive.”

Viviana Arciniega, Community Organizer from NM CAFé , said,“NM CAFé is excited to continue working with our statewide partners and the state legislature to lift up more essential workers that have far too long been excluded from important safety net programs. These exclusions have been more apparent during the pandemic and have significantly impacted the wellbeing of thousands of immigrant New Mexican families. We are grateful for this partnership that will strengthen our economic relief work and ensure more families have access to transformational relief programs.”

“One of the major goals of our coalition was to uplift the important contributions immigrants make to our state,” added Javier Rojo, Research and Policy Analyst from New Mexico Voices for Children. “Every year, New Mexico’s immigrants pay nearly $1 billion in federal, state, and local taxes. Immigrant-owned businesses employ over 27,000 New Mexicans, and generate nearly $4.4 billion in annual sales. Regardless of their status, immigrants work, pay taxes, and create jobs – all of which adds to the strength and vitality of our communities, state, nation, and economy.”

The unrestricted grant will be distributed to Somos Un Pueblo Unido. Albuquerque Community Foundation and the Santa Fe Community Foundation will each contribute $20,000.

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